Will Lumosity make you smarter (or dumber)?

This is my brain on Lumosity. Can you tell the difference?
This is my brain on Lumosity. Can you tell the difference?

In my new book, Finding Mr. Brightside, Juliette purchases a Lumosity subscription for her dad out of guilt for taking an inappropriate road trip with a boy, not because she thinks it'll work. So does it?

Or should you be getting your Edumacation (of Jay Baker) elsewhere? Well, I tried Lumosity so you don't have to, and here's what I discovered about my brain through its scientifically pointless neuroplasticity-building games:

1. My brain still wants to pronounce and spell this website "Luminosity" instead of "Lumosity," so there's plenty of room for improvement.

2. Lumosity claims that their games are designed by neuroscientists, but my brain -- by far the most suspicious of all my organs -- keeps picturing a group of sandal-wearing Harvard undergrads with obnoxious laughs who think they're starring in The Social Network.

3. Doesn't matter what the game, my brain wants to be the BEST OF ALL TIME at it. It realizes this isn't the point, but the chair-sitting adrenaline is clouding its better judgment. (Tip: Press the refresh button on your browser so a bad round doesn't affect your overall score.)

4. Shooting birds that flash on the screen while simultaneously remembering a flashing letter is not going to make me a better athlete and/or driver, as the site vaguely promises. It does, however, make me a better time-waster.

5. My brain thinks remembering where a series of blocks should be placed is fun. Which is one of the reasons why the brain remains such a mystery to all.

6. My brain is in the 90-somethingeth percentile of people in my age range. It also has a tendency to assign too much importance to vague statistics like this one.

7. My brain really wants to believe the training is working, as indicated by me asking people, "Do I seem smarter lately, OR WHAT?"

If, after digesting all these "learnings" of mine, you're still tempted to try Lumosity, you have my blessing. Just make sure you come back and post a comment about the experience. If you forget, then the training obviously didn't work, sorry.

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