Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Monkey Around?

Prince Charles is quoted as saying, “I learned the way a monkey learns - by watching its parents.” Perhaps so but I wonder who learns fastest, the Prince or the monkey?

According to recent scientific findings, when it comes to serious mental powers like short-term memory, young chimpanzees can significantly outperform the Prince at some short-term memory tasks.

In the words of Winston Churchill, “Never hold discussions with the monkey when the organ grinder is in the room.” After all, scientists have the video to prove it. And one of the lead researcher’s says that chimps seem to have something akin to "photographic memory," at least for short-term tests. Don't believe it? Well, then, here’s a way for you to test yourself against the chimp. Just click the link below for a video test.

Click: Test yourself against the chimp!

FYI: Rules of the Game: First, researchers in Japan taught six chimps--three 5-year-olds and their mothers--to recognize and order the numbers 1 through 9. Then they taught them to play a memory game.

In the game, the numbers would appear randomly on a video screen. The object was to touch them in order: 1, 2, 3, etc. But there was a catch. As soon as the chimps pressed 1, the rest of the numbers disappeared, covered over by white boxes. So they had to remember where they had seen the numbers and touch the white boxes that covered them.

Results of the Game: Not only could the chimps do this just as accurately as college students, they could do it faster, too. So the scientists devised another test, to see who could remember and order five numbers that flashed on a screen for just fractions of a second. Result? Another chimp win.

PS. Once I entered a free-style dance contest as a teenager. I won! My prize? A Monkees Album! "Hey hey we're the Monkees, People say we monkey around. But we're too busy pushing buttons to put Prince Charles down."

Once I was a tadpole beginning to begin,
Then I was a frog with my tail tucked in,
Then I was a monkey in a banyan tree,
And now I am a professor with a Ph.D

Enjoy, ron

No comments: