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Who Navigates More Effectively: Men or Women? (Part 2 of 2)

Posted by on Jan 6, 2016 in Alzheimer's Disease, cognitive maps, disorientation, gender differences in navigation, hippocampus, personal navigation, Wayfinding, wayfinding and the brain | 0 comments

Who Navigates More Effectively: Men or Women? (Part 2 of 2)

In the study referenced in the previous blog post (Who Navigates More Effectively: Men or Women? (Part 1 of 2)), medical doctor and PhD candidate, Carl Pintzka, at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim used an MRI scanner to monitor brain activity when 18 men and 18 women used 3D goggles and a joystick to orient themselves in a large virtual maze. He found that men were more effective and, in a followup study, when women were given a single drop of the male hormone,...

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Who Navigates More Effectively: Men or Women? (Part 1 of 2)

Posted by on Jan 4, 2016 in gender differences in navigation, hippocampus, navigation, neuroscience, personal navigation, Wayfinding, wayfinding and the brain | 0 comments

Who Navigates More Effectively: Men or Women? (Part 1 of 2)

The 2015 wayfinding story that grabbed the most attention pertains to that old battle of the sexes (often taking place in the front seats of cars): who has the better sense of direction: men or women? Spoiler alert: in one Norwegian study, men did better at finding their way quickly in a virtual environment. The study was conducted by medical doctor and PhD candidate, Carl Pintzka, at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim. He used an MRI scanner to monitor brain...

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London Cabbies Describe Finding Their Way Along a Complex Route

Posted by on Jan 20, 2015 in cognitive maps, Directional Sense, Finding your way as you drive, hippocampus, navigation, Wayfinding, wayfinding and the brain | 0 comments

London Cabbies Describe Finding Their Way Along a Complex Route

Directionally challenged people have to work hard to learn even short routes between places they frequent. And this is a great accomplishment! Would-be and actual London taxi drivers are at the opposite end of the wayfinding spectrum, probably as a result of outstanding, inherent spatial abilities, and absolutely as a result of years of dedicated, focused, arduous work. This New York Times video shows images along a seven-mile route through London and the 41(!) turns required to get from one...

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Wayfinding Researchers Win the 2014 Nobel Prize in Medicine

Posted by on Oct 6, 2014 in cognitive maps, GPS, hippocampus, navigation, neuroscience, Wayfinding, wayfinding and the brain | 0 comments

Wayfinding Researchers Win the 2014 Nobel Prize in Medicine

This is an exciting day in the world of wayfinding – for the directionally challenged and non-challenged alike! Three researchers, John O’Keefe, Edvard Moser, and May-Britt Moser were awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine for discovering “an inner GPS, in the brain” responsible for helping all creatures navigate, including human beings. Read more about it and them in this New York Times article by Lawrence...

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Which is Better for Your Brain: GPS or Maps?

Posted by on Aug 28, 2013 in apps, cognitive maps, Directional Sense, Directionally challenged, Finding your way as you drive, getting lost, hippocampus, Wayfinding, wayfinding and the brain | 0 comments

Which is Better for Your Brain: GPS or Maps?

The latest GPS news is not another app or whiz-bang device for your car or smartphone: it’s a report about the not-always-helpful effects of using technological shortcuts to find your way around. An article in the Boston Globe online,“Do Our Brains Pay a Price for GPS?”, by Leon Neyfakh, makes the case for why the good old-fashioned way of navigating with signs, maps, and directions may be best after all. He writes that, “Technology is disrupting something the human brain is supposed to...

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TED Talk Explains How Your Brain Tells You Where You Are

Posted by on Jul 6, 2013 in Directional Sense, Directionally challenged, getting lost, hippocampus, navigation, neuroscience, parking, Wayfinding | 0 comments

TED Talk Explains How Your Brain Tells You Where You Are

Do you ever have trouble remembering where you parked your car? This TED talk, by neuroscientist Neil Burgess, explains how the brain’s electrical activity guides us through everyday places, including parking lots. The nine-minute talk is a bit technical, but if you’re interested in the nitty gritty of how we manage to know where we are and get where we’re going, this is a good introduction. http://www.ted.com/talks/neil_burgess_how_your_brain_tells_you_where_you_are.html Dr. Burgess is...

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