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Study: Video games boost visual skills
( 2003-05-29 10:05) (8)

A new study suggests video games might help to improve players' visual skills or train military personnel.

The study, conducted by Shawn Green and Daphne Bavelier of the University of Rochester in New York State, will appear in May 29 issue of British journal Nature.

In the study, the researchers found that male undergraduates who played driving or shooting games several times a week for at least six months beat non-gamers in lab vision tests.

he study report said game-players react to fast-moving objects more efficiently, and can track up to five objects at a time, 30 percent more than non-players.

"The brain changes as a result of training," explained neurobiologist Manfred Fahle of the University of Bremen, Germany. The ends of nerve cells may shift shape, helping them to communicate with each other more effectively, he said.

These skills might help people to drive more safely, Fahle speculated. They may also enable pilots and air traffic controllers to monitor their video display units more effectively.

"Computer games can help you train up your visual attention in several ways," said vision researcher Jeremy Wolfe of Harvard Medical School in Boston, Massachusetts. 

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