Is Google Making Us Smarter?

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Gary Small

Gary Small is the co-inventor of the first brain-scanning technology to detect the physical evidence of Alzheimer’s disease in living people. He also led the team of neuroscientists that was the first to reveal that Internet searching may result in rapid and significant alterations in brain neural circuitry.

Is our increasing reliance on Google rotting our brains and turning us in to lazy halfwits? Or could search engine technology actually be exercising our brains in ways don’t fully understand yet? Neuroscientist Gary Small explains how the brain treats Google like any other repeatedly used tool—it physically changes to strengthen the ability to use the tool. Google may also be making our brains more malleable and better equipped to learn new skills.

This program is part of The Big Idea Series, made possible with support from the John Templeton Foundation.