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Old 07-11-2016, 08:56 PM   #1
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TFC Spawned Brain Development Research

This month's Scientific American Cover Article, baby!

In the late 1990s our laboratory at the University of Rochester ran studies to explore the then somewhat unorthodox idea that even the adult brain could grow new brain cells or rewire itself in response to new experiences—a biological process called neuroplasticity. As part of this research, one of us (Green), then an 18-year-old undergraduate assistant in the lab, coded a computerized psychological test assessing how well one can search for a particular shape in a busy visual scene.

Green began by testing himself. He thought there was a bug because he was consistently racking up perfect scores. A few days later Green reported that newly recruited participants also registered flawless performances. Bavalier (the other researcher) however, got scores that matched the expected average.

After comparing the two sample groups we found that the main difference was that every member of the group had spent more than 10 hours a week playing a newly released video game called Team Fortress Classic.
The article goes on for several pages. Looks like this game inadvertantly started a whole new slew of research that continually showed that surgeons who gamed were better at their work, people stayed more focused, and new neural pathways were built.

Thanks, TFC. Now I know my high school years weren't wasted!
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