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I-Brain – the technological evolution of the brain?

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Erwin-Schrödinger-Saal
Plenary / Panel
english language

Speakers

Parlow-Solomon Professor on Aging; Professor of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences; Director, UCLA Center on Aging; Director, Division of Geriatric Psychiatry; Director, Memory & Aging Research Center, Jane & Terry Semel institute for Neuroscience & Human Behavior and the David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles (CA) Abstract
The current explosion of new technology is not only changing the way we live and communicate, it is rapidly and profoundly changing the way we think and how our brains function. Persistent daily exposure to computers, videogames, television, cell phones and other modern devices stimulates brain cell alteration and neurotransmitter release, gradually strengthening new neural pathways in the brain while other neural networks, lacking stimulation, gradually weaken. Young minds tend to be the most exposed, as well as the most sensitive, to the impact of this digital technology, and the effects are both positive and negative. Reaction time and peripheral vision improves, but attention deficit symptoms and technology addiction can affect learning abilities and contribute to behavioral problems. Normal brain development continues through adolescences when frontal circuits mature to master complex reasoning and planning skills, and the emotional brain centers in the temporal lobe strengthen as young people learn empathy, the ability to understand another person's emotional point of view. Today's young digital natives have never known a world without computers, 24-hour TV news, Internet and cell phones. Their brain neural circuitry has mastered this modern technology, but their traditional face-to-face human contact skills are often neglected. By contrast, older digital immigrants adapt to the new technology more slowly - they're reluctant to try the new gadgets and their brains are slower to learn how to use them. Yet, their neural networks controlling direct social interaction are stronger since they grew up in a time when technology was less prevalent and face-to-face conversations more common. As a consequence of the rapidly increasing high-tech stimulation, we are witnessing the beginning of a new kind of generation gap, what I call the brain gap between younger and older minds. In this lecture, I will elucidate this current pivotal point in brain evolution; show how we all - digital natives and digital immigrants alike - can adapt to it; and provide the tools we need in order to take charge of our lives and our brains, while we preserve our humanity and keep up with the latest technology.
Freie Journalistin, Wien Chair

MD Gary SMALL

Parlow-Solomon Professor on Aging; Professor of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences; Director, UCLA Center on Aging; Director, Division of Geriatric Psychiatry; Director, Memory & Aging Research Center, Jane & Terry Semel institute for Neuroscience & Human Behavior and the David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles (CA)

1969-1973 BA in Biology, University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)
1977-1978 MD, University of Southern California School of Medicine
1977-1978 Internship, Internal Medicine, Children's Hospital & Adult Med. Center, S.F., CA
1978-1981 Psychiatry Residency, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA
1969-1973 BA in Biology, University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)
1977-1978 MD, University of Southern California School of Medicine
1977-1978 Internship, Internal Medicine, Children's Hospital & Adult Med. Center, S.F., CA
1978-1981 Psychiatry Residency, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA
1978-1981 Clinical Fellow in Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School
1981-1983 Geriatric Psychiatry Fellow, UCLA School of Medicine
since 1983 Assistant ( 83) to Associate ( 90) to Full Professor ( 95) of Psychiatry, UCLA
1988-2002 Director, UCLA Geriatric Psychiatry and Psychology Fellowship Program
1997-2007 Director, Imaging Core, UCLA Alzheimer Disease Center
since 2007 Director, Neuroimaging & Biomarkers Core, Easton Alzheimer Research Center
since 1997 Director, UCLA Center on Aging
since 1998 Parlow-Solomon Professor on Aging, David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA
since 1998 Director, Memory and Aging Research Center, Semel Institute for Neuroscience
since 2008 Director, Geriatric Psychiatry Division, Department of Psychiatry and Semel Institute

Dr. Gisela HOPFMÜLLER-HLAVAC

Freie Journalistin, Wien

1984-2009 Ressort Innenpolitik in der Radio-Information, ORF - Österreichischer Rundfunk
1991-1997 Ressortleiterin, ORF - Österreichischer Rundfunk
1997-2002 Sendungsverantwortliche "Report", Moderation des politischen TV-Wochenmagazins des ORF "Report"
1999 Sendungsverantwortung für "Report International"
2001 Sendungsverantwortung für "Europa-Panorama"
2002-2005 Moderation von "Modern Times", des Zukunftsmagazins des ORF
2002-2009 Leiterin der Hauptabteilung "Bildung und Zeitgeschehen", ORF - Österreichischer Rundfunk
seit 2009 Freie Journalistin und Moderatorin

Technology Forum

show timetable

27.08.2009

10:00 - 12:30Technology brunch of the Tiroler ZukunftsstiftungSocial
13:00 - 13:10Opening by the European Forum AlpbachPlenary
13:10 - 14:00Welcome statementsPlenary
14:00 - 16:00Pathways out of the crisis - new perspectives through research and innovation?Plenary
16:30 - 18:00The future of stem cell researchPlenary
20:00 - 21:30A look at the past - the secrets of our originPlenary
21:30 - 23:30Evening reception hosted by Forschung Austria in cooperation with GFF and BMVITSocial

28.08.2009

09:00 - 18:00Junior Alpbach - Science and technology for young peopleBreakout
09:00 - 15:00Technology Workshop: Trend radar of developments in societyBreakout
09:00 - 15:30Working Group 01: Can we trust in feed and food?Breakout
09:00 - 15:30Working Group 02: An international comparison of research, technology and innovation-policy (RTI) strategiesBreakout
09:00 - 15:30Working Group 03: "Sowing and harvesting" in bio(techno)logical research: From the atomic structure of proteins to the discovery of new drugs and their clinical applicationBreakout
09:00 - 15:30Working Group 04: Biomedical and pharmaceutical engineering - key technologies of the 21st centuryBreakout
09:00 - 15:30Working Group 05: Infratech - a chance in crisisBreakout
09:00 - 15:30Working Group 06: Creativity - fuel for the knowledge society?Breakout
09:00 - 15:30Working Group 07: Creative industries vs. old economy: where is the economy headed?Breakout
09:00 - 15:30Working Group 08: Universities: responsibility for the futureBreakout
09:00 - 15:30Working Group 09: Trust in the future - investment in researchBreakout
09:00 - 15:30Working Group 10: Digital Government - citizens and administration in a conflict areaBreakout
09:00 - 15:30Working Group 11: E-Mobility AustriaBreakout
09:00 - 15:00Ö1 Children's University Alpbach - Science and technology for kidsBreakout
10:00 - 15:00Special Event: Positioning Austria in the international knowledge areaBreakout
16:30 - 17:45Creativity. How kids learn - learning like kids do?Plenary
18:15 - 20:00Innovative research locations - regions in competitionPlenary

29.08.2009

09:30 - 10:45Can we trust in science? Integrity in scientific researchPlenary
10:45 - 11:30The future of the universe - perspectives for astrophysics and cosmologyPlenary
12:00 - 13:00I-Brain - the technological evolution of the brain?Plenary
13:00 - 13:15Closing statementPlenary
13:15 - 14:00Snack receptionSocial