Override: My Quest to Discover the Truth About Brain Training and Rewire My Imperfect Mind
|Author:||Caroline Williams (Lecturer in Political Theory, Queen Mary and Westfield College)|
Can you really rewire an adult brain? In theory the answer is 'yes', but there's a problem- no one seems to know exactly how to do it. In Override, Caroline Williams sets off on a mission to find out. Delving into the latest studies on brain plasticity, which indicate that brain games don't actually do much to make you smarter, she tries to square that finding with the reality of brain plasticity - that the brain adapts physically as we learn something new. Visiting top neuroscientists in their labs, she volunteers herself as a guinea pig in neuroscience studies, challenging researchers to make real changes to her - functioning, but imperfect - brain. She seeks to improve on her own weaknesses, such as a limited attention span and a tendency to worry too much, and then branches out into more mysterious areas such as intelligence, creativity, and the perception of time. Trying everything from high-tech brain stimulation to meditation, adding bolt-on senses and retraining her stress response, Override is a very intimate, fascinating journey into discovering what neuroscience can really do for us - and, crucially, whether it's worth all the bother.
Caroline Williams is a science journalist and editor. A feature editor, and regular contributor to New Scientist, her written work has also appeared in The Guardian, BBC Future, and BBC Earth, among others. She has worked as a radio producer and reporter for BBC Radio and was the regular co-host of the New Scientist podcast from 2006 to 2010. She holds a BSc in Biological Sciences from Exeter University and an MSc (Distinction) in Science Communication from Imperial College London. She lives in Surrey, UK.