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Road Map of the Mind: Understanding Functional MRI

What if I told you it was possible to read, or even hear, your thoughts? Mind reading has been the stuff of science fiction for some time — something that 50 years ago would have been thought impossible. Even today, there’s quite a bit of doubt, but what can be seen is the activity across brain regions each time we produce thoughts. While sending messages through brain waves [ … ]

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You’re Fired! Your “Subordinate” Brain At Work

In our market-based economy, everyone has a boss. Most of us answer to a manager or supervisor, but even the CEO answers to shareholders. So the pressures of being judged for your work hardly vanish the further up the ladder you climb. And if you asked them, many business leaders would probably tell you they miss the responsibility-free days of being file clerks. [ … ]

aging

Game Theory: A Q&A with Dr. Adam Gazzaley

Dr. Adam Gazzaley has studied attention, memory, and perception for 25 years. He earned his M.D. and Ph.D. in neuroscience at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York before completing a clinical residency in neurology at the University of Pennsylvania and postdoctoral training in cognitive neuroscience at the University of California, Berkeley. [ … ]

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Discovering Happiness By The Numbers

Are you happy? Fewer questions are more open-ended or catch us by surprise than this one. How happy should we be and how often? Our usual instinct is to say “yes” — but we probably answer more reluctantly than usual. It’s a moment when it’s almost impossible to not compare the life [ … ]

aging

Unlocking the Wisdom of the Brain

We all know that age brings about the decline of certain brain functions such as memory recall and reaction time. What might be less known is that studies show that people become more satisfied with themselves and their lives as they get older. Eurobarometer and Gallup conducted a study [ … ]

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Meet Your Brain’s GPS: The Hippocampus

Your brain probably doesn’t enjoy waking up early anymore than you do — a complicated task of taking in the first daylight and establishing your surroundings, just before you check your alarm clock and realize you’ve got about a half hour until your morning commute. From then on, there’s probably a hundred other decisions [ … ]

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Food for the Body, Food for the Mind

When determining what to consume, both in terms of food and information, it is helpful to have a standard with which to judge the effects of our choices. For food, it is helpful to have a sense of what it feels like to be truly healthy. It is possible to feel what the food you eat is doing to you when the senses of your body are restored to a natural equilibrium. But what kind of standard should we use for the mind? [ … ]

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The Neuroscience Behind Rationalizing Our Mistakes

Many of us have a hard time admitting when we’re wrong, but, even more so, we don’t like admitting that something about our logic (or belief systems) is flawed. So we rationalize, justify and sometimes fictionalize our stories, telling rose-colored lies to downplay our mistakes and make our choices and behaviors seem less faulty. [ … ]

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How To Survive Your Teenager’s Brain

We all know the story of Romeo and Juliet: Two teenagers fall instantaneously and deeply in love despite their families’ being bitter enemies. Believing themselves to be “star-crossed lovers,” they seize the moment and secretly marry. Eventually they and their best friends die. The theme of the play is [ … ]