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Is your brain ready for Monday? Tease your mind with these four optical illusions

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A great way to learn more about our brains and minds is to look at how we can trick them–that is, to see how we react to brain teasers and visu­al illu­sions.

Below are four fun opti­cal illu­sions that let us learn­ about our visu­al system…ready?

(answers and expla­na­tions at the bot­tom)

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Test your Brain and Mind with these 9 Classic Optical Illusions

Are the two orange cir­cles of the same size? 

One way to learn more about our brains and minds is to look at how we can trick them–that is, to see how we react to brain teasers and visu­al illu­sions.

Quick facts: The brain has two hemi­spheres, each divid­ed into four lobes. Each lobe is (large­ly) respon­si­ble for dif­fer­ent func­tions. For instance the frontal cor­tex (in yel­low) is respon­si­ble for deci­sion mak­ing and plan­ning; the tem­po­ral lobe (in pur­ple) for lan­guage and mem­o­ry; the pari­etal lobe (in green) for spa­tial skills, and the occip­i­tal lobe (in red) is entire­ly devot­ed to vision: It is thus the place where visu­al illu­sions hap­pen..

Below are 9 opti­cal illu­sions that com­bine fun and learn­ing about our visu­al sys­tem. We know you know there is a trick since these are illu­sions… but don’t try to be smarter than your brain; enjoy being sur­prised!

(You’ll find answers and expla­na­tions at the end of the arti­cle)

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5 quick brain teasers to sharpen two key cognitive skills: attention and working memory

Look­ing for some fun–and free–cognitive stim­u­la­tion over the week­end? Here you have a few quick brain teasers to chal­lenge your atten­tion and your work­ing mem­ory (work­ing mem­ory is the capac­i­ty to keep infor­ma­tion in your mind while work­ing on pro­cess­ing and inte­grat­ing it)

Please give them a try…they are not as easy as they may seem 🙂 Read the rest of this entry »

The Hermann grid optical illusion, explained

In this image, do you see some­thing oth­er than black and white? Does it mat­ter if you look direct­ly at one of the black blocks, vs. at one of the inter­sec­tions?

Hermann Grid

While there are real­ly only black blocks and white spaces in the grid, the high con­trast black and white areas fool the eyes into per­ceiv­ing a gray cir­cle at each inter­sec­tion. The illu­sion results from Read the rest of this entry »

Test your memory and reasoning skills with these American and international proverbs

Temporal lobe Frontal LobeMem­o­ry relies most­ly on tem­po­ral (see green area, in image to the left) and frontal (in red) areas of the brain. These may be the areas that will get stim­u­lat­ed when you (assum­ing you are Amer­i­can or have lived in the US for long) try to remem­ber the miss­ing words in the Amer­i­can proverbs below.

How­ev­er when it comes to inter­na­tion­als proverbs below you may have to use your rea­son­ing skills more than your mem­o­ry skills, as it is like­ly that you do not know these proverbs. In this case, the frontal exer­cise is more intense. Try to guess what the final words of each inter­na­tion­al proverb might be. Use your log­i­cal skills. Read the rest of this entry »

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As seen in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, BBC News, CNN, Reuters and more, SharpBrains is an independent market research firm tracking health and performance applications of brain science.

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