Mind Hacks: Tips & Tricks for Using Your Brain (英語) ペーパーバック – 2004/12/2
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The brain is a fearsomely complex information-processing environment--one that often eludes our ability to understand it. At any given time, the brain is collecting, filtering, and analyzing information and, in response, performing countless intricate processes, some of which are automatic, some voluntary, some conscious, and some unconscious.Cognitive neuroscience is one of the ways we have to understand the workings of our minds. It's the study of the brain biology behind our mental functions: a collection of methods--like brain scanning and computational modeling--combined with a way of looking at psychological phenomena and discovering where, why, and how the brain makes them happen.Want to know more? Mind Hacks is a collection of probes into the moment-by-moment works of the brain. Using cognitive neuroscience, these experiments, tricks, and tips related to vision, motor skills, attention, cognition, subliminal perception, and more throw light on how the human brain works. Each hack examines specific operations of the brain. By seeing how the brain responds, we pick up clues about the architecture and design of the brain, learning a little bit more about how the brain is put together.Mind Hacks begins your exploration of the mind with a look inside the brain itself, using hacks such as "Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation: Turn On and Off Bits of the Brain" and "Tour the Cortex and the Four Lobes." Also among the 100 hacks in this book, you'll find:
- Release Eye Fixations for Faster Reactions
- See Movement When All is Still
- Feel the Presence and Loss of Attention
- Detect Sounds on the Margins of Certainty
- Mold Your Body Schema
- Test Your Handedness
- See a Person in Moving Lights
- Make Events Understandable as Cause-and-Effect
- Boost Memory by Using Context
- Understand Detail and the Limits of Attention
The authors have compiled a fascinating ?collection of probes into the moment-by-moment works of the brain?. From getting to know the structure of your brain to learning how we see, hear and recall events, Mind Hacks allows you to test the theories of neuroscience on your own grey matter. If you?ve always wanted to get closer to your cerebellum but never plucked up the courage to take that DIY neurosurgery course, this is the book for you.? ? PD Smith, The Guardian, 15 Jan 2005商品の説明をすべて表示する
I liked the idea of the book, and when I started reading it, it seemed somewhat unengaging. Somewhere after the first 10 hacks or so that changed. I guess I started developing a feel for what it was all about. It's sort of textbook-ish, but nevertheless very interesting. Sort of like a lab manual and you are the lab.
I think other reviewers have given a pretty fair idea of what it's about, so I'll only make a few comments.
I think it's worthwhile reading their comments sprinkled among the references. There's some very good info there and suggestions about further reading.
A real show stopper item is how we use the external world as a database to help us see. That's a real twist. See the J. Kevin O'Regan web article, Hack #40. That reminds me. Some of the illusions on the web, particularly those on change blindness, are a little tricky. A good illustration is in this article. There's a section (single line actually) called "slow motion". You probably won't notice what happens in the animation until it stops, and you try to restart. Suddenly it jumps out at you. My point is that sometimes you have to fidget awhile with the computer. This is not a fault of the book.
Another show stopper (to me at least) is the experiment discussed in the chapter on integration, Hack #61. It appears that language is necessary to integrate information from our senses. In this case, geometry and color.
As of this writing, it's unfortunate the publisher hasn't yet put some of the book online. There are a few items I would like to search for that I did not highlight and cannot find in the index. The index is, however, quite good.
Another good current read on the mind is "Blink" by Malcolm Gladwell.
P.S. I'm looking for the story about the pilots.