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A Shenzhen Scientist is Developing a Helmet to Improve Your Brain Power

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It’s Wednesday, “hump day”, just after lunch and you’re feeling a little sluggish. What’s your solution? A quick walk round the block to stretch your legs and clear your head? An emergency bolt to the nearest coffee shop for an espresso shot? Or do you just slip on your brain-improving helmet?

Yep, we’re at that stage of weird sci-fi ideas (almost?) becoming reality thanks to the Shenzhen Institute of Advanced Technology (SIAT) and Dr Wei Pengfei. They’ve apparently developed a (currently non-invasive) “brain function enhancement system” that they say will improve “the brain’s ability to perform complex tasks and regulate abnormal emotions,” according to State news agency Xinhua.

And yes, you’re right, that bit about “abnormal emotions” does sound especially scary.

Here’s more from SIAT’s website:

The helmet could be applied in the training of special personnel to speed up an increase in memory and skills and to alleviate anxiety caused by tension.

The technology is also expected to help treat children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and people suffering depression, Alzheimer’s disease, aphasia and Parkinson’s disease, said Wei.

[…]

[T]rial participants wore the helmet for about 15 minutes, and then were required to quickly memorize a string of numbers, English letters or words. The test found the average accuracy rate of their memories improved within two hours.

But the data is still insufficient, said Wei. Large-scale double-blind experiments among people of different ages and groups are needed to accumulate convincing data.

The whole thing sounds a bit like a Lu Yang art piece or a kids cartoon, but, err, I guess we’ll just have to see where this goes.

Image: whiteMocca/Shutterstock

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