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zona(2012/3/22 23:03:16)  点击:59032  回复:0  IP:183.* * *
     Catch yourself daydreaming while washing the dishes again? If this happens often you probably have a pretty capable working memory, new research suggests.


  This mind wandering, it seems, actually gives your working memory a workout. Working memory is the mental work space that allows the brain to juggle multiple thoughts simultaneously. The more working memory a person has, the more daydreaming they can do without forgetting the task at hand.

  走神实际上会锻炼你的工作记忆力。工作记忆是大脑的工作空间, 能让大脑同时在多种想法间跳跃。人的工作记忆容量越大 ,那在不影响工作的情况下做的白日梦就越多。

  "Our results suggest that the sorts of planning that people do quite often in daily life — when they're on the bus, when they're cycling to work, when they're in the shower — are probably supported by working memory," study researcher Jonathan Smallwood, of the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Science, said in a statement. "Their brains are trying to allocate resources to the most pressing problems."

  “我们的研究结果表明,人们在日常生活中,在公交车上,骑自行车上班时,淋浴时等时候,经常做的那类计划很有可能都是由工作记忆来支持的”, 马克斯·普朗克人类认知和脑科学研究所的研究人员乔纳森·斯莫尔伍德在一篇报道中写道。“人们的大脑试图把资源分配给最紧迫的问题。”

  Researchers studied groups of people from the University of Wisconsin-Madison community, ranging in age from 18 to 65. The first group was asked to perform simple tasks, like pressing a button every time they took a breath or clicking in response to a letter popping up on a computer screen; these tasks were so easy that their minds were likely to wander, the researchers figured.

  研究人员对来自威斯康星大学麦迪逊分校社区中的几组年龄从18岁到65岁的人员进行了研究。让第一组人员执行简单的任务,例如每次按按钮的时候吸口气,或者点击电脑屏幕上跳出来的字母 ;研究人员推测,由于这些任务都非常简单,所以他们应该会很容易走神。

  The researchers checked in periodically, asking the participants if their minds were on task or wandering. When the task was over, they measured each participant's working memory capacity by having them remember letters while doing math equations. Though all participants performed well on the task, the researchers noticed that the individuals who indicated their minds had wandered more than others also scored higher on the working memory test.


  "What this study seems to suggest is that, when circumstances for the task aren't very difficult, people who have additional working memory resources deploy them to think about things other than what they're doing," Smallwood said.

  “这次研究似乎表明,当工作不是很难的时候,人们会有额外的工作记忆资源,可以让自己去想工作以外的事情。” 斯莫尔伍德说。

  Missing moments


  When our minds run out of working memory, these off-topic thoughts can take the main stage without us consciously meaning them to; for instance, arriving at home with no recollection of the actual trip, or suddenly realizing that they've turned several pages in a book without comprehending any of the words.


  "It's almost like your attention was so absorbed in the mind wandering that there wasn't any left over to remember your goal to read," study researcher Daniel Levinson, a graduate student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison's Center for Investigating Healthy Minds, a part of the Waisman Center for Brain Imaging and Behavior, said in a statement.

  研究人员丹尼尔·莱文森在一篇报道里说:“你的注意力好像都用来走神了,没有余下的用来阅读。” 丹尼尔是威斯康星大学麦迪逊分校健康头脑调查中心的一名研究生,该调查中心是韦斯曼脑成像和行为研究中心的分部。

  People with overall higher working memory were better able to stay focused when the task at hand required it. Those who had low working memory often had their thoughts drift away from the task, and did less well at it.


  The findings add to past research suggesting these mind drifts can be positive moments. For instance, daydreaming has often been associated with creativity — researchers think that our most creative and inventive moments come when daydreaming. It's likely that the most intelligent among us also have high levels of working memory, Levinson noted.


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