Behavior: Alpha Wave of the Future

Alone in a semidarkened room, a young woman relaxed in an armchair before a blank screen, three electrodes fixed to her scalp and one grounded to an earlobe. Suddenly a pale blue light flickered on the screen and then steadied; a voice said quietly: "That's alpha."

The voice was that of Neurophysiologist Barbara Brown of the Veterans Administration Hospital in Sepulveda, Calif. She was demonstrating "biofeedback training," a new way of teaching human beings to control the kind of waves their brains emit—in this case, a rhythm called alpha, which usually accompanies a mood...

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