Have you ever wished you had Jedi powers? You might think that you will never reach the level of the wisdom, power, and grace of the noble warriors from a galaxy far, far away, but a new study suggests that we all have at least one Jedi feature built into our brains. A group of researchers from the Radboud University Nijmegen in the Netherlands just published a paper showing that people have the possibility to predict the movement of objects thanks to the high-speed visualization techniques that simulate the result in our own thoughts before the movement actually happens. Woah.
The study, which was published in Nature Communications, used a simple test consisting of a white dot moving across a black screen. The team used an fMRI to track the brain activity, painting a clear picture of the areas of the brain were to observe and learn the pattern.
Then, after a short pause, the more than two dozen volunteers were hooked and back-up of a similar animation, but this time only the first half of the point of the movement was displayed. However, fMRI data revealed that brain was actually the simulation of the dot’s full path, have learned it earlier, and it was the processing of that information twice as fast as when they appear in the entire animation. In short, the brains of the subjects were for the running of their own visual simulation of what he expects to see, the ability to predict the outcome as if it was watching it actually happen.
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Scientists believe that these predictive cognition that helps us in big and small aspects of daily life, such as the catching of a lost set of keys out of the air or to know exactly when and where a car passes on the street. In essence, our brains are predicting these things will happen before they happen, and we react in sync with that prediction, instead of relying only on our own specific perception. As “seeing things before they happen” is indeed a Jedi trait, that our brains are clearly huge Star Wars fans.