EXPERIMENTS & DEMONSTRATIONS: Links to demonstrations and experiments that you may find interesting to explore, as well links to various other cognitive-related resources. Some of the experiments can be run right over the web through your browser. Others you need to download or to obtain a plugin for your browser before running the experiment. In general, if you need something to run the experiments or demonstrations, I've indicated so after the link description.
Demonstrations & Experiments
Blind Spot. This is a particularly compelling demonstration of the visual blind spot.
Broca's Aphasia. A video about Broca's aphasia with Norman Geschwind and a male patient suffering from Broca's Aphasia. Don't believe all the explanations--some are out of date. However, the video is interesting for showing a patient who exhibits the classic symptoms of an expressive aphasia--his speech is halting and labored. However Geschwind in carefully interviewing the patient shows that the problem is more subtle--the patient also has difficulty comprehending when comprehension depends upon syntactic processing. Here's another video of a female patient exhibiting classic symptoms of Broca's Aphasia.
Cognition Laboratory Experiments. A number of online experiments from Hanover College, including the Stroop experiment, mental rotation, attentional blink, and several other studies, including a partial report experiment similar to Sperling's original experiment.
CogLab. Commerical website for online experiments that you must have purchased license to run. You will need your registration number to use.
Eye Tracking Technology -- Demonstrations of eye-tracking hardware and software. Eye-trackers enable the researcher to track the sequence of eye movements and fixations an individual makes while reading or looking at stimuli--e.g. reading a page of text or looking at a painting or a face:

Eye Tracking Demo 1 - Looking for a gift on amazon.com
Eye Tracking Demo 2 - Scanning a web page and looking at a photograph
Eye Tracking Demo 3 - Reading some text; searching and reading a web page.
ePsych: Website for Java-based online experiments and demonstrations that you can explore. Developed by Gary Bradshaw
Invisible Gorilla. Demonstrations of attention-related phenomena, including Change Blindness and Inattention Blindness
The McGurk Effect. Online demonstration of how speech perception is heavily influenced by visual as well as auditory input in sorting out what speech sound is uttered (e.g. /ba/ versus /da/). Quicktime required. Here's an even better demonstration of the McGurk Effect that I recently found--check it out.
Mental Rotation Experiment. One of many experiments written by John Kranz at Hanover College. These experiments are very nice because you can change several of the parameters when you run the experiment.
Missionaries and Cannibals Problem. An online version of this classic puzzle used to study problem solving processes. (Thanks to Chris Dibartolo for this link). Actually, I like this link better: Missionaries & Cannibals Problem
Phoneme Restoration Effect - When a phoneme is deleted from a spoken utterance there is a noticeable gap; however, when this gap is filled with white noise, you hear the missing phoneme. Your brain fills in the gap or restores the phoneme, a clear example of Top-Down Processing. The demonstration you want to listen to is Temporal Induction of Speech: Single Phonemic Restoration, which is recordings #9 thru #12.
PsychExps: Experiments that you can run over the web and view your results (requires Authorware Plug-in to be installed on your browser).
Stroop Experiment 1: A very nice online version of the Stroop . Try it for yourself and bring your data to class.
Stroop Experiment 2. Another online demonstration of the Stroop effect.
Tower of Hanoi. An online version of the classic puzzle used to study problem solving processes.
Dictionaries & Guides
Visionary. A dictionary for the study of vision.
Whole Brain Atlas. Need to identify a brain structure. This is an excellent
Perception & Visual Illusions
Filling-in Illusion. Sometimes, if you stare at something long enough, it disappears. The visual system no longer infers that it sees anything!
Images and Links. An long list of perception links, from Dr. Pomerantz's Psychology of Perception course at Rice University. Images as well as demonstrations, some of which are covered by other links here as well.
Motion-induced Blindness. Again, under special circumstances the visual system will not 'see' what is out there. In effect, we are always blind.
86 Optical Illusions & Visual Phenomena - Michale Bach's wonderful collection of visual illusions. The best on the web.
The Motion After Effect - This a compelling illusion. After staring at a moving scene (e.g. a waterfall) for 30 seconds or so, when you look at a stationary scene, it appears to be moving in the opposite direction of the movement you just observed. The illusion clearly shows the mind does not passively react to a stimulus but actively interprets the stimulus. In this case, there is NO motion yet the brain infers that there is. Here are two additional motion after effect demonstrations: the Buddha of Kamakura and a Spiral Motion After Effect demonstration.
Some additional visual illusions links from Rice University.
Papers, Tutorials, Books
ACT Web. John Anderson's ACT research group. The ACT-R unified theory of cognition attempts to develop a cognitive architecture that can perform in detail a full range of cognitive tasks. The theory is implemented as a computer simulation that can perform and learn from the same tasks worked on by human subjects in the lab.
Agnosia. An agnosia is the loss of the ability to recognize objects, people, sounds, shapes or smells. Sensory and perceptual processing are usually intact as is memory. The patient suffers from difficulty recognizing patterns (e.g. visual objects such as faces or auditory patterns such as melodies or chords. Agnosias are generally the result of brain injuries or damage. The link here is to a Wikipedia entry that lists the various types of Agnosias as well as external links.
Cell phones and driving. Here's a link to a page created for my graduate cognitive psychology seminar. There are many links here to articles and videos on cell phones and driving. The research is quite overwhelming. Talking on a cellphone while driving is 4 to 6 times more likely to lead to an accident. Research has also established that talking on a cellphone is as likely to lead to an accident as driving drunk. Watch the video interview with Dr. David Strayer.
Creating False Memories. Scientific American article by a leading memory researcher, Elizabeth Loftus, on the false memory controversy.
How Psychological Science Informs the Teaching of Reading. An excellent monograph by Keith Rayner and colleagues on the latest cognitive research about how reading should be taught--published by the Association for Psychological Science . There is also another link at the APS site to an article from Scientific American entitled How Should Reading Be Taught that discusses similar material. Both make the case that phonological mediation plays a critical role in learning to read.
Multitasking to Distraction - Contrary to popular opinion, multitasking is not a positive asset that increases learning or performance. Rather it prevents learners from selectively attending to stimuli and performing well.
The Pen Is Mightier Than the Keyboard: Advantages of Longhand Over Laptop Note Taking. Considerable research suggests that taking notes longhand results in greater learning than taking notes with a computer, even when a computer is used soley for taking notes. This occurs despite that taking notes with a computer results in more detailed notes—even then notes taken longhand produce greater learning. Part of the explanation is that taking notes with a notebook computer lead to shallower processing of the material being learned.
Pi, Anyone? The Secret to Memorizing Tens of Thousands of Digits - An article in LiveScience that talks about individuals who have memorized the number PI to many thousands of digits. Extraordinary as this might seem the secret is using memory strategies similar to those we’ve discussed in class (e.g. the Method of Loci and Interactive Visual Imagery) and plenty of practice.
Secrets of a Mind-Gamer: This article from a New York Times Sunday Magazine article talks about training the memory to compete in memory tournaments and argues that super memories are the result of practice and hard work.
The Magical Number Seven, Plus or Minus Two: Classic paper by George Miller on processing limits. Miller has one of the most beautiful prose styles of any psychologist I've read.
William James was very interested in consciousness and proposed a distinction between primary memory and second memory--what today we would call short-term (or working) memory and long-term memory. However, James was interested in a wide range of psychological topics. This site is devoted to material about William James.
Study & Learning Aids, Strategies for Improving Learning and Memory
Study & Test-Taking Guide. Various sites with study skills and test taking strategies information.
Research finds practicing retrieval is best tool for learning - Jeffrey Karpicke, a Purdue assistant professor, who studies learning and memory has published research showing that practicing or testing yourself on material is one of the most effective ways to study and learn.
To Really Learn, Stop Studying and Take a Test - NY Times article about Karpicke's work, with a reference to the Science article that he published on the research.
Joshua Foer, recent winner of the US Memory Championship (2006)
Sexy Ruses to Stop Forgetting to Remember - 03-09-2011 NYT article by Maureen Dowd about Joshua Foer's new book on memory, “Moonwalking With Einstein: The Art and Science of Remembering Everything”. Foer won the 2006 United States Memory Championship. Dowd's comments show little knowledge or understanding of how memory works. It's more of a opinion piece about a bestseller with much opinion but little scientific substance.
A Deep Dive to Retrieve and Fortify Memories - NYT, March 09, 2011 article on a experiments with rats describing a drug that apparently that can strengthen memories - in rats. The original research was published in Science magazine.
Remember How Important It Is Not to Forget - Michiko Kakutani's NYT review of Foer's book, "Moonwalking with Einstein: The Art and Science of Remembering Everything
Secrets of a Mind-Gamer: How I trained my Brain and Became a World-Class Memory Athlete -- A piece published in the NYT Sunday magazine in anticipation of Joshua Foer's new book "Moonwalking with Einstein."
Total Recall - Article from The Guardian, by Ed Cooke, the person who coached Foer on improving memory.
Wikipedia article on Ed Cooke, who trained Foer. Cooke graduated with a degree in psychology and philosophy from Oxford University. He's published a book, Remember, Remember that unfortunately doesn't seem to be available in the US.
Forget Me Not - Article in Slate magazine by Foer on winning the US Memory Championship. There a link to an NPR interview with Foer here as well.
Other Links
Hispanic Population Grows Dramatically in California - This short NPR interview touches on the topic of the fluency of Hispanic children in English. Guess what. As discussed in this course, these kids learn and speak English with little problem, and Spanish as well. Given the benefits of bilingualism for cognition, this is good news for California.
PI World Ranking List - In 1981, Rajan Mahadevan accurately recited 31,811 digits of pi from memory. In 1989, Japan's Hideaki Tomoyori recited 40,000 digits. In 2005, Lu Chao of China recited pi to 67,890 digits. By the time you read this the record will have fallen again. Check this link to see what the current world record is.