Perceptual Pleasure and the Brain
A novel theory explains why the brain craves information and seeks it through the senses
From hand-held DVD players to hundred-inch plasma screens, much of
today's technology is driven by the human appetite for pleasure
through visual and auditory stimulation. What creates this appetite?
Neuropsychologists have found that visual input activates receptors
in the parts of the brain associated with pleasure and reward, and
that the brain associates new images with old while also responding
strongly to new ones. Using functional MRI imaging and other
findings, they are exploring how human beings are
"infovores" whose brains love to learn. Children may enjoy
Sesame Street's fast pace because they get a "click of
comprehension" from each brief scene.
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