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Doctor argues benefits of Brain Training, probably has a brain age of 63

David Hinkle, @davehinkle
January 3, 2008
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Nicole Kidman's endorsement of Nintendo's software for the DS has one doctor in particular crying "humbug." Dr. Jason Braithwaite, a cognitive neuroscientist (maybe after playing enough Brain Age, we'll figure out what that is exactly), seems to be of the mind that using the non-game exhibits "no conclusive evidence showing that the continued use of these devices is linked to any measurable and general improvements in cognition." This all stems from him seeing one of Kidman's adverts, where she states "I have quickly found that training my brain [with Nintendo's Dr Kawashima's Brain Training computer game] is a great way to keep my mind feeling young"

"Practice at any task should lead to some form of improvement for that specific task," he adds. But, we wonder if that applies here. Sure, individual tasks in repetition will undoubtedly cause one to improve at completing them, but the exercises in Nintendo's title are varied and the whole goal of the game isn't to sit there for hours on end, practicing individual exercises. The daily training, along with the sudoku, and other items that make up the whole package come together to bring forth the improvement felt by the user. These are small sections of the user's day devoted to the working the brain, when the time could otherwise be used to waste brain power by watching TV or, if it were us and we were afforded spare time in our day, sleep.

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