Author: msauter

The single reason for why basic research is important

People, like me, who are doing basic research, get often asked about how our basic science research can be applied. Most of the time, we don’t know. Nobody knows. Maybe someday we will, maybe we won’t. This is not important. Why not? Imagine you suddenly wake up naked in a rocky, sandy place, in the middle of nowhere. It’s really hot and you start...

Excessive Video Game Playing Linked to Generalized Anxiety Disorder – A Large-Scale Investigation of Gaming, Attitudes and Anxiety (2)

The (slightly filtered) dataset underlying this post has been released publicly on PsyArxiv. If you want me to do more analyses, please contact me any time. You can do them yourself, too, of course! This is part 2. Re-read part 1 here. I finally took the time to get into the data and do the first analyses for which I used the...

Is the dress black-blue or white-gold? Color constancy in the wild

Social media reactions exploded over the picture of a dress a couple of hours ago. The question seems simple enough but turned out tricky: Is this dress white and gold or blue and black? The colors seem incredibly different and initially I thought this was some kind of a social media joke. But apparently people were really not agreeing on...

Purging of memories from conscious awareness tracked in the human brain

When being asked about the importance of memory most people would say that remembering something is good and forgetting something is bad. While this seems reasonable to believe about factual knowledge (f.e. information about places or names of persons), there are certainly cases where it is beneficial to not remember something. The most prominent example is amnesia after a traumatic...

We watch you while you sleep – neuroimaging of dreams

Revised essay by Marian Sauter for the application to the Axol Science Scholarship 2015/16 In the last decade, technology has made it possible to combine fMRI and EEG in one experiment while minimizing the artifacts that the two methods produce on each other when combined. This paved the way for combined studies, in this example for the purpose of studying...

Are we in power? The functional neuroanatomy of intentional action

In his talk at the LMU Munich in April 2013, Marcel Brass gives an account of the functional neuroanatomy of intentional control of action. Since he found previous neuroanatomical evidence to be contradictory, he developed a new model decomposing intentional action into what, when and whether components (Brass & Haggard, 2008). Aside from his model, he talks about preconscious determinants...

Excessive Video Game Playing Indicates Poor Satisfaction With Life

Last year, I did an informal experimental study about Starcraft 2, a highly complex real time strategy game. Your success in Starcraft heavily relies on multitasking (in it’s every-day use). Multitasking in this sense means that you need to keep a complex mental loop for actions which need to be performed in a rapid succession. Professional-level players normally perform up...