Microwave - and other forms of electromagnetic - radiation are major (but conveniently disregarded, ignored, and overlooked) factors in many modern unexplained disease states. Insomnia, anxiety, vision problems, swollen lymph, headaches, extreme thirst, night sweats, fatigue, memory and concentration problems, muscle pain, weakened immunity, allergies, heart problems, and intestinal disturbances are all symptoms found in a disease process the Russians described in the 70's as Microwave Sickness.
Monday, May 09, 2016
Smartphones and iPads change how the human brain works - and are destroying our memories
iPads change how the human brain works - and are destroying our memories
Smartphones and iPads really do shorten attention spans, a new study has warned.
The multi-media devices are changing how
the human brain works - making it harder for us to fully understand
Reading screens on tablets and phones
makes users focus on a few concrete details rather than the big picture.
Seeing the bigger picture is important
because it involves flexible reasoning, creativity, judgement and logical
The findings presented at a conference
for human-computer interaction serve as a wake-up call to how digital media is
harming our ability to use abstract thought.
Classrooms are increasingly becoming
digital as work is done on computers rather than in notebooks.
The study found more than 300
participants recruited for four tests performed better at comprehension and
problem solving when they read information on print-outs rather than digital
Professor Geoff Kaufman, of Carnegie
Mellon University in Pennsylvania, said: "There has been a great deal of
research on how digital platforms might be affecting attention, distractibility
and mindfulness and these studies build on this work by focusing on a
relatively understudied construct.
"Given psychologists have shown
construal levels can vastly impact outcomes such as self-esteem and goal
pursuit it's crucial to recognise the role digitisation of information might be
having on this important aspect of cognition."
Construal levels are the fundamental
amount of concreteness versus abstractness people use in perceiving and
interpreting behaviours, events and other informational stimuli.
The researchers wanted to know if
processing the same information on a digital versus non-digital platform would
Reading material and other content was
published using the same print size and format in both versions with volunteers
aged 20 to 24 years.
Participants were asked to do a series of
tasks including filling in a form, reading a short story and comparing
different car models - either on paper or on a computer screen.
Those given print-outs paper were much
better at understanding the whole material while those using computers
remembered particular details.
In a comprehension test about a short
story those who had read it in print fared far better in questions about the
story's inferences and broader narrative while those who had read the digital
document retained more information about minor details.
When evaluating the specifications of
four fictional cars, 66% of those who had read the comparison on paper could
correctly say which was the best model, against 43% of those who had read it on
For the abstract questions participants
using the non-digital platform scored higher on average with 66% correct as
compared to those using the digital platform - 48%
On the concrete questions participants
using the digital platform scored better with 73 per cent correct as compared
to 58 per cent correct.
The study on digital versus non-digital
platforms was prompted by earlier research which revealed players of the
digital version of the public health strategy game "POX: Save the
People" were more inclined to respond with localised solutions rather than
looking at the big picture.
Professor Mary Flanagan, of Dartmouth
College in New Hampshire, said: "Compared to the widespread acceptance of
digital devices as evidenced by millions of apps, ubiquitous smartphones and
the distribution of iPads in schools, surprisingly few studies exist about how
digital tools affect our understanding - our cognition.
"Knowing the affordances of digital
technologies can help us design better software.
"Sometimes it's beneficial to foster
abstract thinking and as we know more we can design to overcome the tendencies
- or deficits - inherent in digital devices."
The research is being presented at the ACM
(Association for Computing Machinery) CHI (Computer-Human Intyeraction) '16
conference in San Jose in California.