2.23.2006

MRI and Cognitive Games: A New Wave
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For several years, Cognitive Labs has pursued research into neurocognitive games that can drive measureable results under MRI, notably work completed at UC-Irvine.

Now, Nintendo is moving to commercialize similar breakthroughs derived from the work of Kawashima-san. (Other mentions of Dr. Kawashima's work in this blog: on aging | on cognitive gaming (Of course we have already launched our 1st and 2nd series of cognitive games) with more on the way, plus the game central portal and Gamer IQ. Get a membership

NEW YORK (Wall Street Journal) Nintendo's Brain-Training Game
Targets Older Players
By GINNY PARKER WOODS
February 23, 2006; Page B1

KYOTO, Japan -- Japan's hottest videogame is about to hit the U.S. --
and it doesn't involve shooting or racing. Rather, it's a bunch of word and
math problems with a distinctly no-thrills title: Brain Age: Train Your
Brain in Minutes a Day.

The idea came two years ago, when Nintendo Co. President Satoru Iwata
read a book by a Japanese neuroscientist that explained how to keep the mind
sharp with simple math problems. Mr. Iwata made a pilgrimage to the author's
office at a university in northern Japan and asked him to collaborate
on a videogame.

The scientist, Ryuta Kawashima, invited a team of Nintendo programmers
to his lab. For five months, they attached electrodes to the heads of test
subjects, who played with a prototype puzzle game. Then they used Dr.
Kawashima's brain-imaging technique to determine which drills
stimulated the mind the most.


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