Brain training games don't train your brain
I tried brain-training once. It involved cracking open people's skulls and then whipping their mind-blubber to see if it would jump through a flaming hoop. My experience told me one thing... and it's the same conclusion that Adam Rutherford has arrived at... brain training doesn't work.
One of the biggest money-spinners of the last few years has been the brain-training game. These games have caught people's imaginations like sudokus did years ago. Basically, people's need for faux self-improvement knows no bounds. That's why The Little Book of Calm sold a tonne of copies. Essentially, people are idiots.
Brain-training games are more desirable because its software, and software is made by science-type people who surely wouldn't spin a yarn to make a buck. Would they? This flies in the face of the complete lack of evidence of whether brain training actually improves your cognitive ability.
Research, also done by science-types who you may wish to ignore, shows that more than 11,000 volunteers were split into groups (one playing brain-training exercises, a second doing general cognitive tests and a third who just farted about online for a bit) for six weeks, completing memory tests and the like.
The conclusion was that brain-training games will improve your performance on brain-training games. As all three groups showed improvements, it shows that you might as well muck about on the internet than faffing around with a Nintendo D:S.
Lead researcher Adrian Owen says: "You're not going to get better at playing the trumpet by practising the violin."
So there you have it. Brain-training is a massive, dirty con... unless of course, you bought a game because you thought it was fun. Which is fine and makes this news pointless.