Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Is it real or......

Think about it. When you really want to remember some important event or site you’re seeing on a vacation or a specific time, you want to step back and take it all in. Now, we normally think of paying attention to an object as a way of perceiving it better, but according to a new report in the journal Nature Biotechnology, this type of sustained attention actually worsens the memory and perception. The authors of the study showed people black-and-white stripes and had them report whether these stripes leaned to the left or to the right. The closer and more attentively the people looked, the more difficult the task became. In other words, the first few moments of paying attention help and then it becomes counterproductive. One way to avoid the problem is to look away periodically and start paying attention again. I love these studies because they look at how the brain works and ways we can alter our perception.

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