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N-back and multitasking - brain effects
papripa | 8 months ago Reply Link me
N-back and multitasking - brain effects
Some research shows or suggests that multitasking causes brain damage and impairs (working) memory. (For example:

Concerning this, I was wondering how this relates to brain training games and especially the well-known N-back, which is said to improve fluid intelligence/working memory. Since N-back is more or less a multitasking game (because you have to remind both the sounds and the positions), I was wondering whether this game can also cause brain damage – instead of being beneficial?
papripa | 8 months ago Reply
Wouldn't multitasking refer to attending to different sets of stimuli, which requires switching, and results in less efficient use of brainpower? The N-back task only uses one set of multiple stimuli at a time. So I guess you have to switch between the different stimuli but it's all sort of the same package. In virtually any single real-world task, you'd be working with multiple types of stimuli, like position and color or sound, so I don't think this would be an issue.
I haven't noticed any problems, although I will say that especially when I practice triple N-back, I can attend to random stimuli and file it away without losing my place on another task, which sounds like multitasking.
I'd say N-back training helps my ability to focus on individual tasks. But would single, dual or triple N-back differ in this way? I wonder...
? | 7 months ago Reply
? | 8 months ago Reply

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