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Minor updates, spatial updating, and generalization
cognitivefun | 9 years ago Reply Link me
Minor updates, spatial updating, and generalization
The auditory reaction time was added a few days ago. It should have been added earlier, but there was a significant audio lag on Linux, which in the end seemed to affect every Flash application on the tested system, so it was uploaded as-is.

Next, the spatial updating task was updated slightly, based on user feedback; there are now enough variables in the test that it has been moved to the experimental category, although it is quite clearly a simple spatial memory task. The biggest change is that you can now have the arrows update sequantially, as opposed to simultaneously in the previous setting; the cognitive load on updating for the sequential task is far lower now, and the core of the task becomes maintaining the visual dot positions in memory.

One can argue about the domain-specificity of this task: if, for example, we replace the 3x3 grids by chessboards, and replace the dots with chess pieces, it is imaginable that someone well-practiced in blindfold chess would be able to perform well enough, which would involve the use of episodic memory rather than just spatial memory. In fact, it would be very easy to transfer such skill from blindfold chess to this spatial memory updating task after devising a quick conversion/encoding process.

It is certainly possible to treat this test as a specific case, like chess. In fact, it is possible to find an analogous component to almost any training task, unless it is designed to reduce generalization. The n-back task is a very reasonable and obvious test to apply this concept.

While "working at the capacity limit" is suggested as a precursor to improvement in Jaeggi et al.'s work, this is also generally true for attaining "expert level performance" per K. A. Ericsson's work. So if there are task-specific strategies in play soon into training, it should be possible to stay at the same n-level and still increase the cognitive load by manipulating the stimulus, and produce a measurable learning effect with comparable levels of trasnferability (among tasks with similar requirements for working memory).
cognitivefun | 9 years ago Reply
Thank you a lot for your hard work. I like the new spatial updating task, esp. that you now answer for every square. :)
ilikebutts | 9 years ago Reply
"Thank you a lot for your hard work."
Seconded - this site becomes more interesting by the day.
cevapcici | 9 years ago Reply
Definitely well done. I stopped using any other brain training software at home!
bovinebrain | 9 years ago Reply

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