Those brain-training apps have no effect on cognitive function

Originally published at:


Maybe they could help with headline-writing?

ETA: Glad my comment helped instead! :stuck_out_tongue:


I stare at this when I’m high as a Georgia pine tree, it works for my cognitive function.


Dude. That’s awesome.


E-pills from the online pharmacy that promise to make my brain grow, right?

Like MENSA, this site can make me feel smart for only a nominal fee. Well worth the money! But if they’re so smart, why can’t they spell luminosity?

1 Like

Dudette, I know.

1 Like

Longer version, two weeks ago, from Neuroskeptic:

1 Like

Those brain-training apps…

…a commercial brain-training program called Lumosity…

When I read the headline I wondered what “those” were. So those generally refers to one specific program?

FWIW I think of measuring risk versus reward as only one very basic type of game scenario, and hardly seems a useful benchmark of cognition generally. Risk versus reward games are predicated upon subjective criteria of having preferred outcomes. I am sure many can relate to that, but its hardly general cognition.

I suspect that many creativity and productivity programs such as word processors, IDEs, CAD/CAM, music, illustration, photo, video etc editors can have some effect upon cognition, depending upon how one uses them.

Being smart doesn’t rule out being dyslexic, too.
Or just sloppy.

Also, I’ve known really smart people who had the problem that their speech apparatus (or the motor skills needed) just couldn’t keep up with their brain. However, in this case my money is on sloppy.


I’ll be getting back to Portal 2 then. It may not make me smarter but it does prepare me for a future of sarcastic AIs trying to kill me.


I know what you mean here. Have seen the same.

This study doesn’t address what I want to know, though. I’d like to know what happens if you have older folks at risk of dementia do the program for a couple of years. Does it have any effect on preserving function?

1 Like

“High as a Georgia pine tree” - as I was not familiar with the phrase or the tree, I poked around Jimbopedia a bit.
Turns out that
Pinus palustris is quite interesting (as far as trees go)
○ I live in Pinus sylvestris territory
○ pines are symbols for a long life, dependability, and self-denial (which I find somewhat amusing in this context) in China
○ I need to brush up my skills in how to recognize different types of tree from quite a long way away

1 Like

Same here. I play a bit with Lumosity and find a couple of games really challenging. In one you’re a railroad manager and the other a barista.

Also really noteworthy to me is that Lumosity and video games were found to cause no differentiation from a third non-gaming group. How much of that brain “muscle” was already developed by a couple of decades of gaming though? I’ll read the link from Immutable Mike as soon as my attention span returns.


Evidence for the the well-worn idea in the early childhood field. Educational Games are never as good - at teaching or at being games - as games made by people who just love games. Play is learning.

1 Like

This topic was automatically closed after 5 days. New replies are no longer allowed.