DailyDirt: Playing Tricks With The Mind

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

The human brain is a pretty interesting contraption. And generally, we learn about how it works when things "go wrong" with it. The results of brain mapping are pretty fascinating -- especially when we find out that many humans have common brain areas that perform the same tasks. Armed with this information, we can try to trick ourselves and hack our own thoughts. But even if we can't quite figure out how our brains work, the odd cases of various brains gone awry are interesting to see. Here are just a few examples:
  • A woman who knows no fear has been studied at the University of Iowa. Researchers say, "It is quite remarkable that she is still alive." [url]
  • One Vietnamese man hasn't slept in decades. Unfortunately, he doesn't like taking MRIs, so it's tough to say what's going on with him. [url]
  • A few people have really really good memories. Not being able to forget things doesn't quite seem like a comic book superpower, but maybe it should be. [url]
  • Harvard researchers show that the placebo effect works even when patients are told they're being given sugar pills. This study actually just proves how bad doctors are at running control experiments (... or maybe that some patients really don't trust anything a doctor tells them.) [url]
  • Transcranial magnetic stimulation sounds like a cool way to turn off parts of your brain. But becoming an idiot savant probably isn't as appealing as it sounds. [url]

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    1. identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 7 Dec 2011 @ 3:58am

      Re: Re: Placebo Issue

      The whole point of a placebo is so that you know *nothing* is changing in that group. It's called a control. If you start modifying the control, it's no longer a control.

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