Mike Ambinder, a psychologist and researcher at Valve, packed a room at the Game Developers Conference with a talk on whether you can control games directly with a brain computer interface. Increasingly, game developers are asking whether a 17-button controller or a mouse/keyboard are the best possible interfaces for interacting with games — or if there is something more “naturalistic” that could improve the connection between what we want to do in a game and what actually happens. It may be the stuff of dreams, but Ambinder said many researchers are working on solving the problem today, and it’s hard to predict how soon someone will make a breakthrough. The whole point is to cut the middleman, in this case the game controller, between the intention of the player and the game simulation. Above: Mike Ambinder is the experimental psychologist at Valve.Image Credit: Dean Takahashi “In the long run, this will give us the most bang for the buck,” said … [Read more...] about Valve psychologist explores controlling games directly with your brain
Make your brain smarter
source Samantha Lee/Business Insider Scientists aren’t sure if technology is destroying our brains, but they’re pretty confident it can trigger some obsessive behaviors that look a lot like addiction, and lead to depression. It’s also slowing down our thinking processes. Some tasks are better done off the phone, research suggests. This is an installment of Business Insider’s “Your Brain on Apps” series that investigates how addictive apps can influence behavior. All day long, we’re inundated by interruptions and alerts from our devices. Smartphones buzz to wake us up, emails stream into our inboxes, notifications from coworkers and far away friends bubble up on our screens, and “assistants” chime in with their own soulless voices. Such interruptions seem logical to our minds: we want technology to help with our busy lives, ensuring we don’t miss important appointments … [Read more...] about This is what your smartphone is doing to your brain — and it isn’t good
Dementia affects more than 60 million Americans. And today, on Christmas day, many will realize at family gatherings that their elderly relatives have gotten worse at remembering things. I know this well, as my 85-year-old mother has dementia, a memory loss disease that can lead to Alzheimer’s. I’ve been spending some time talking to experts about it, and how we can turn to technology, medicine, or even games to stave off what seems inevitable as our bodies start to outlive our minds. Too often, I’ve found that tech products have been designed without the needs of older people in mind. Clover Health, a health care technology company with a mission of helping its members live their healthiest lives, is one of the companies trying to improve mental skills for the elderly. They recently established a partnership with the team at MindMate App. The app combines brain games, healthy nutrition, regular exercise, and social interaction. It encourages its users to … [Read more...] about How Clover Health partnered with MindMate app to help elderly with brain games
An IT department should run in the background in relative anonymity. When responsibilities are handled properly, there shouldn’t be much noise coming from this part of the organization. Unfortunately, most IT departments are anything but efficient. They’re slow and cumbersome, which produces frustrating reverberations in other key areas that directly drive profitability and growth. The Negative Impact of IT Inefficiencies Your company’s IT department is more important than most people realize. If something breaks down, fails, or falls apart in this area, it leads to negative ramifications elsewhere. Some of these side effects include issues like: The inability to provide customers and clients with the services they’ve been promised. Downtime that costs the business sales. Overwhelming customer service requests and complaints. Frustrated employees who feel like they don’t have the resources necessary to perform their job duties. Time spent … [Read more...] about Are These Issues Causing Your IT Department to Move at a Snail’s Pace?
Humm has a headset that can make you smarter, at least temporarily, by stimulating the part of your brain that is responsible for learning and memory. This “biohacking” can help you play games or esports better, or otherwise simply improve your cognitive performance. Berkeley, California-based Humm has created a headband that uses electrical stimulation to deliver electrical signals to your frontal cortex. No, it’s not a frontal lobotomy. The team at Humm thinks of it more as biohacking, or helping you get a cognitive edge through technology. This is just the sort of thing that I could use to become an esports athlete. You can wear the Humm Edge headset and press a button, which activates the electrical brain stimulation. Humm CEO Iain McIntyre said in an interview with GamesBeat that you can directly improve cognitive performance simply by wearing the device while you work, with no additional meditation or special diets. “We target the part of the brain … [Read more...] about Humm’s headset turns your brain into overdrive for better gaming