Susan Greenfield: living online is changing our brains

August 5, 2011 | Source: NewScientist

(Credit: stock image)

Neuroscientist Susan Greenfield cited evidence that digital technology is having an impact on our brains:

  • A recent paper, Microstructure abnormalities in adolescents with internet addiction disorder, in the journal PLoS (free access).
  • Increase in people with autistic spectrum disorders.
  • The rise in the appeal of Twitter.
  • A review by the cognitive scientist Daphne Bavelier (Children, Wired: For Better and for Worse) in the journal Neuron, in which she says that this is a given, that the brain will change. She also reviews evidence showing there’s a change in violence, distraction and addiction in children, linked to the pervasiveness of technology.
  • People are spending most of their waking hours using technology, mostly in isolation.

“We should be planning a 3-D environment for our children [to enjoy] instead of putting them in front of a 2-D one,” she advises.