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Monday, December 29, 2014

Your Brain Thinks Your Smartphone Is An Instrument

Music Smartphone image
It's a scientific fact that a musician's brain is stimulated just by picking up a musical instrument. In fact, everyone knows that one of the reasons why musicians have GAS (Gear Acquisition Syndrome) is that obtaining something new makes you want to play and opens up new creative gateways for inspiration.

It's hard to believe, but scientists have found that people who use smartphones stimulate those same regions of the brain, according to a paper in the Current Biology journal.

The scientists noticed that the constant finger movements were similar to what happens to a musician playing a violin. Because of the way a smartphone is operated with thumb, index and middle fingers, its substantially different from a traditional cellphone with buttons, so none of the same brain regions are activated.

There were two differences between smartphone brain stimulation and instrument playing. The length of time spent owning a smartphone did not affect neural activity, so it doesn't equate to practicing an instrument, and the more recently someone used a touchscreen phone, the more likely you are to master it.

Although there's no direct evidence, this may be why many of us continually look for music iPhone apps or new IO. It inherently feels like an instrument, so we naturally want to treat it that way. Now let's see what kind of new iOS apps NAMM brings.

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