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Mind you, this book is 10+ years old but that's not exactly the impression I got from it. That is, the brain __is plastic__ and __does__ have a high capacity for "re-configuring" itself. The story of the woman who was born with only one hemisphere of here brain comes to mind. There are other examples as well in the book.

"The Brain That Changes Itself: Stories of Personal Triumph from the Frontiers of Brain Science"

comboy · 2017-07-01 · Original thread
You can have pretty much the same mental condition when you are 70-80 years old as when you are 20-30. But to have that you need to keep using your brain and challenging it. Old people usually have much less opportunity to stay mentally active. And less motivation.

Statements above are based mostly on The Brain That Changes Itself by Norman Doidge[1] which I highly reccomend. Plus just listen to some old folks that you can tell are still quick - Warren Buffet 86, Chomsky 88, James Harris Simons 79 and so on.


comboy · 2015-04-12 · Original thread
I've also been programming for 20+ years and it seems to me it's only getting better. To be fluent there really is a lot to learn that takes time. From learning how the whole operating system works on the lower level through all design patters and common pitfalls to mastering everyday tools (dvorak, zsh, vim etc.) that shorten the path between ideas and working code.

I know some coders in their 60s that just like you have a fresh mind and are still eager to learn new things.

I believe association with older people being less capable of mental task and creativity stems from how our society works (or rather worked). People used to do the same job, then become some grandpa with not much input or challenges to keep their brain active. It is quite well documented at this point[1] that when you keep challenging your brain there is not all that much degradation coming with age. It's just that as you get older it's becoming harder to present something really new to your brain - it will tend to view it through existing patterns and use shortcuts that you already have. That's why picking up some new language (not just programming lang) just for the sake of learning something new is a good idea (but what for? could be for fun - dopamine is a lot of fun)

* The Brain That Changes Itself: Stories of Personal Triumph from the Frontiers of Brain Science - Norman Doidge ( ), great book

The Tale of the Dueling Neurosurgeons : Sam Keam - Quite liked the writing style - neuroscience book written in a story format

Other good books in similar genre

An Anthropologist on Mars: Seven Paradoxical Tales : Oliver Sacks

The Brain That Changes Itself: Stories of Personal Triumph from the Frontiers of Brain Science: Norman Doidge -

comboy · 2014-07-31 · Original thread
I highly recommend reading "Brain that changes itself" by Norman Doidge. I have no idea how good lumosity games really are, but you can improve your cognition doing such "puzzles" if they are designed well.

If you enjoy these kind of brain modification technologies, check out the book The Brain That Changes Itself, which discusses neural plasticity This is the science that led to the cochlear implant and may lead to other brain-interface devices.

Also, the part about biohacks and bio-weapons, reminded me of the movie Prometheus.

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