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  1. #1
    null Jonny's Avatar
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    Default N-Back and Dual N-Back

    After hearing a bit about this stuff from @ygolo and @Gish, I downloaded a few apps for my phone and decided to play around with this sort of mental conditioning. While progressing from n=1...2...3..., I noticed something interesting...

    While I found the first couple of steps to be relatively natural, I started struggling with n=3+, and like most people sought ways to improve my performance. The first thing that came to mind was creating a mental image of the numbers in my head. That got me thinking, however, about how we humans tend to lose sight of the actual purpose of an activity by getting lost a particular detail or metric of performance. Given the purported objective of this sort of exercise (the strengthening of working memory, intellectual focus, and general intelligence), it seems counterproductive to develop those sorts of methods to enhance performance, so to speak, because the performance that is actually being enhanced is shifted from strengthening specific mental processes to achieving a higher score on a particular activity (which is meant to be a means of strengthening​ and evaluating said mental processes; a sort of proxy). I liken it to starting out with bicep curls, and deciding to arch your back while curling to increase the amount of weight you can lift: your biceps don't really become stronger, but you become a better curler.

    In a study that ygolo linked to me, researchers observed a correlation between improvement on a particular n-back exercise and measures of general intelligence, with repeated conditioning and evaluation over time. I wonder, though, whether they would notice a statistically significant difference in that correlation between individuals depending upon their method for improvement (e.g. "I imaged a string of numbers visually" or "I developed pneumonic devices" vs. "I just kept at it and got better").

    Thoughts?
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  2. #2
    FRACTALICIOUS phobik's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonny View Post
    After hearing a bit about this stuff from @ygolo and @Gish, I downloaded a few apps for my phone and decided to play around with this sort of mental conditioning. While progressing from n=1...2...3..., I noticed something interesting...

    While I found the first couple of steps to be relatively natural, I started struggling with n=3+, and like most people sought ways to improve my performance. The first thing that came to mind was creating a mental image of the numbers in my head. That got me thinking, however, about how we humans of the INTP MBTI type tend to lose sight of the actual purpose of an activity by getting lost a particular detail or metric of performance. Given the purported objective of this sort of exercise (the strengthening of working memory, intellectual focus, and general intelligence), it seems counterproductive to develop those sorts of methods to enhance performance, so to speak, because the performance that is actually being enhanced is shifted from strengthening specific mental processes to achieving a higher score on a particular activity (which is meant to be a means of strengthening​ and evaluating said mental processes; a sort of proxy). I liken it to starting out with bicep curls, and deciding to arch your back while curling to increase the amount of weight you can lift: your biceps don't really become stronger, but you become a better curler.

    In a study that ygolo linked to me, researchers observed a correlation between improvement on a particular n-back exercise and measures of general intelligence, with repeated conditioning and evaluation over time. I wonder, though, whether they would notice a statistically significant difference in that correlation between individuals depending upon their method for improvement (e.g. "I imaged a string of numbers visually" or "I developed pneumonic devices" vs. "I just kept at it and got better").

    Thoughts?
    FYP.
    To avoid criticism, do nothing, say nothing, be nothing.
    ~ Elbert Hubbard

    Music provides one of the clearest examples of a much deeper relation between mathematics and human experience.

  3. #3
    Google "chemtrails" Bush Did 9/11's Avatar
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    n-back is designed primarily to exercise short-term memory. Short-term memory is, in turn, linked to intelligence, to the extent that some say that short-term memory is near-equivalent to general intelligence. There are many strategies, such as mnemonics, mental images, speaking the sequence aloud to oneself, or even straight-up repetition, that can be used; and if one works toward getting better at the game, they'll probably fall into a few that work for them.

    Some games and activities are farther-reaching than others. In those that are too specific, yeah; in practicing those activities, you'll become better at the activity, but you won't be able to apply that skill to anything else.

    There's also dual n-back, where you have to remember two independent 'strings,' one of which is the typical visual n-back, one typically a string of sounds. (The very thought of a triple n-back makes me gag.) For those variants, there might not be a strategy as workable as 'keeping at it until your short-term memory just gets better.'
    J. Scott Crothers
    aka "Bush Did 9/11"
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    "Just as jet fuel cannot melt steel beams, so too cannot the unshakeable pillars of Truthtology ever be shaken, whether by man, nature, or evidence."
    - Elevenetics

  4. #4
    Senior Member prplchknz's Avatar
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    I get between 20-30% correct on the first round. But i've always known I've had shitty short term memory I was doing dual n-back btw
    In no likes experiment.

    that is all

    i dunno what else to say so

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