Tech: Today's Nerd Could Be Tomorrow's G.I.

A study in last week's Nature suggests--sorry, parents--that Grand Theft Auto III, left, Counter-Strike and other video games that require players to shoot bad guys and slay monsters may improve the kind of visual skills needed for, say, driving a car or even being a soldier. In the study, men 18 to 23 were tested for their ability to identify flashing cues, switch their attention rapidly and count objects approaching from many directions. The result: gamers performed up to 50% better than nonplayers, a finding that researchers suspect applies to younger kids as well. To rule out the possibility that the...

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