More Mind Reading

Berkeley neuroscientists report that they have been able to identify images subjects looked at solely by analyzing fMRI scans of the subjects’ brains. Jack Gallant and his team at the University of California Berkeley published their findings in Nature.

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Krispy Kremes Light Up The Brain

OK, I admit it… if this story was about rats and food pellets, it wouldn’t be particularly compelling. But when scientists decide to see what your brain does while it’s looking at Krispy Kreme donuts, that’s news! Neuroscientists at Northwestern University, as part of an effort to understand how stimuli affect our brains in various [...]

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Breaking News – Perfume Turns Guys On

South Korean researchers have conducted an fMRI study that shows that perfume can arouse some men. Shocking news, eh? Eight healthy right-handed heterosexual male volunteers (20-35 years of age), having normal olfaction and no brain diseases, were recruited. During fMRI, a women’s perfume was given as an olfactory sexual stimulant in an alternating block design [...]

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Baby Pictures Really Do Grab Our Attention

Since the early days of advertising, it’s been axiomatic that pictures of babies grab the attention of readers more effectively than any other kind of image. This has led to baby pictures being used in ads for just about any kind of product or service, often with a cute caption to tie in the image [...]

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Neuromarketing Top Tech Trend at BusinessWeek

Neuromarketing is one of the Top 8 Tech Trends for 2008, according to BusinessWeek’s Stephen Baker in What You Really Want to Buy. Forget focus groups. Companies that want feedback on a product are getting inside consumers’ heads – literally. The latest rage in marketing involves harnessing a test subject to a narrow shelf, securing [...]

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Cultural Brain Differences

It appears that neuromarketing practitioners face one more challenge in analyzing brain scans. Research at Stony Brook University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Stanford University shows that people from East Asian cultures use their brain differently than people raised in the U.S. The study, titled “Cultural Influences on Neural Substrates of Attentional Control,” appeared [...]

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CMU Computers Read Thoughts

Most scientists have dismissed the idea of reading minds using technology as pure science fiction, but Carnegie Mellon University researchers have moved a step closer to doing so. Not only have they been able to identify which of several images a subject is looking at using fMRI scans of their brains. The most startling result [...]

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Political Neuromarketing

I’ve been waiting for the first news of neuromarketing in the 2008 U.S. presidential election, and it has arrived a full year before the election itself. The first few conclusions seem so obvious as to not require firing up a multi-millon dollar fMRI machine: Voters sense both peril and promise in party brands. Emotions about [...]

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Neuro-Alarmism at Popular Mechanics

It’s Halloween, so Popular Mechanics must want to scare its readers. The magazine has thrown fuel on the fire of neuro-alarmism by running a November issue cover story by Jeff Wise talking about “digital thought police” and filled with frightening prospects of obligatory brain scans in criminal cases, fMRI police interrogations, and manipulative neuromarketing. The [...]

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Painful Sushi and Other Pricing Blunders

What’s the worst way to sell something? According to Carnegie Mellon University economics and psychology professor George Loewenstein (see The Pain of Buying and Brain Scans Predict Buying Behavior), selling products in a way that the consumer sees the price increase with every bit of consumption causes the most “pain”. This isn’t physical pain, of [...]

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