Weird Brain Facts

Research has shown that we spend about one third to a half of our time up in the clouds daydreaming, drifting, or thinking off-task. Whatever the term you choose to use, it implies that the brain is not working during that time.

However, scientists now know the brain is unusually active during that time. That’s because the brain activates several areas associated with complex problem solving. So, while the brain may not be concentrating on the task at hand, it unconsciously turns its attention to sort through other important problems.

Driving the Fight or Flight Response

There’s no doubt that human behavior has evolved over time. What worked for humans as hunter-gatherers or nomads tens of thousands of years ago may not be quite as helpful trying to navigate city life today. But while behaviors may be adapted to changing times, scientists say the psychological, biological and physiological roots of those behaviors never completely go away.

It is the close connection between movement and hearing that Duke researchers are studying. That connection helps drive the behavior response system known as “fight or flight.”