Your Computer Therapist Will See You Now
Computer-based cognitive-bias modification therapy appears to work with some patients with a drinking problem.
To boost treatment success, his team developed cognitive-bias modification, or CBM, which, for the first time, “tries to turn around those impulsive responses.” This newly developed CBM variety employs video-game-like “approach-avoidance tasks”: pushing or pulling a joystick in response to images on a screen. Pulling zooms in on the image, as if the participant were “approaching” it. Pushing zooms out, in “avoidance.”
The teams earlier studies found that heavier drinkers, shown images of alcoholic beverages or soft drinks, are faster to “pull” the alcohol than lighter drinkers – but CBM can turn this “approach bias” into an “avoidance bias.”
Could CBM help serious alcoholics? In this study Wiers and his collaborators – Carolin Eberl and Johannes Lindenmeyer of the Salus Clinic in Lindow, Germany, and Mike Rinck and Eni S. Becker of Radboud University – recruited 214 inpatients at the Salus Clinic. Three weeks after detoxification, the patients were assessed for their craving for alcohol, as well as their attraction to it, indicated by joystick and word-association tasks.
One group of patients then received CBM: they were trained to push away pictures of alcoholic drinks. The control groups either received “sham” training or none at all. Four 15-minute sessions were conducted on four consecutive days.
When retested a week later, the CBM participants’ “approach bias for alcohol had changed to an avoidance bias, on a variety of tests,” said Wiers. The control groups showed no such changes.
Science fiction readers have had plenty of sessions with computer therapists; consider the Sigfrid von Shrink from Frederik Pohl's 1970 novel Gateway, Dr. Smile from Philip K. Dick's 1965 novel The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch and the machine psychologists from James Blish's 1957 novel Cities in Flight.
Via The Behavioral Medicine Report.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 3/12/2011)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )
Related News Stories -
The Largest Virtual Universe!
'...a machine able literally to contain the Universe Itself .' - Stanislaw Lem, 1965.
ARM Wants To Build Brain Chips
'Slivers of microsoft, angular fragments of colored silicon...' - William Gibson, 1984.
Robot Swarms Controlled With Augmented Reality
'You're not thinking in enough dimensions...' - Daniel Suarez, 2009.
Eterni.me - To Skype With The Dead
'Nothing... left of Jeserac but a galaxy of electrons frozen in the heart of a crystal.'- Arthur C. Clarke, 1956.
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
TALOS Exoskeleton Development Proceeding
'Suited up, you look like a big steel gorilla...'
Autonomous Robots Navigate Like Rats
'Out of warrens in the wall, tiny robot mice darted.'
SINTEF Robot Cleans Solar Panels
'The window cleaners, with large padded feet...'
Pangorin Restaurant Service Robots
What'll you have? Jawa juice?
Drug Creates Real Melanin Tan
I've used them all my life...
Medical Drones Hover Like Angels Near You
'The death-reversal equipment is on its way...'
SkEye Amazing Israeli Gigapixel Drone
'An eye that could not only see, but fly...'
How Rude! DARPA Wants Robots To Behave More Like Threepio
'Do I know protocol? Why, it's my primary function.'
'Liquid Light' Flows Around Corners
Light as a superfluid.
Unrolling The Filmy Materials Of Space Tech
'When unfolded and unrolled... it became a tough, gleaming film.'
Buddy Companion Robot Your Bulbous Friend
'Nanny was built in the shape of a sphere, a large metal sphere, flattened on the bottom...'
Poli-X1 Prototype Bee Pollinator
Is there anything drones can't do?
Bake in Space Bake-Off... In Space!
'A joyous condition commenced for the cook in the electric kitchen...'
DeepMind AI Baffled By Homer Simpson, Needs Human Help
'Whenever a robot finds something it can't identify straight off...'
Does Earth's Middle Mantle Hold Oceans Of Water?
Al Gore, you have no idea.
Vaccine Blocks Heroin High
'You're biochemically incapable of getting off...'
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories