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Zack Lynch is author of The Neuro Revolution: How Brain Science Is Changing Our World (St. Martin's Press, July 2009).
He is the founder and executive director of the Neurotechnology Industry Organization (NIO) and co-founder of NeuroInsights. He serves on the advisory boards of the McGovern Institute for Brain Research at MIT, the Center for Neuroeconomic Studies, Science Progress, and SocialText, a social software company. Please send newsworthy items or feedback - to Zack Lynch.
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« The 5th Year in Ideas for the Brain (Part 1) | Main | Flavors of Experience - 5th Neuroesthetics Conference »

December 13, 2005

The 5th Year in Ideas for the Brain (Part 2)

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Posted by Zack Lynch

Continued from yesterday's 5th Year in Ideas for the Brain from the NYTimes Magazine:

5. Seeing with your Ears: A new device called "vOICe" allows you to present visual information into sounds, allowing blind people do "see" with sound.

6. Subadolescent Queen Bees: According to a study released this year, girls as young as 4 manipulate their peers to stay atop the social hierarchy. " They'll spread rumors and give their peers the silent treatment. They do what ever it takes to maintain control."

7. Trust Spray: A nasal spray containing the "trust hormone" Oxytocin can be used to make human subjects more trusting. In a 128 person research experiment almost half of the individuals who took three snorts per nostril of the spray transferred all their money to unseen trustees, whereas only a quarter of those who inhaled a placebo went that far.

8. Yawn Contagion. Steve Platek, a cognitive neuroscientist at Drexel University, describes yawning as " a primitive unconscious mechanism that has a lot to do with empathy. To prove his point he put volunteers into fMRI machines and made them yawn again and agin to pinpoint the areas involved. Apparently their brains lit up in the same region that is known to be highly associated with empathy. Bottom line: if you yawn a lot, you are more likely to exhibit "higher empathy."

Comments (3) + TrackBacks (0) | Category: Neurosociety


COMMENTS

1. Anonymous on December 15, 2005 5:32 PM writes...

Those ideas are absolutely wonderful and can change our society forever. My favorites are the new device called Voice, and trust spray. Those are wonderful

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2. Susan on December 16, 2005 5:21 AM writes...

Techonoly progress continues to develop with amazing speed. Those devices are really useful and wonderful.

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3. payton on January 9, 2006 5:03 AM writes...

the trust spray is somewhat frightening (ha.)
my trust isn't easily given, and there is a reason for that-i don't like getting burned

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