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Companies, advertising agencies and tech giants slowly realized the power of dopamine.
Tech companies which already rely on persuasion lapped up this ‘sex, drugs and rock’n’roll’ molecule, essentially hacking the human mind after learning about its basic vulnerability, using the knowledge to increase the rate at which people use their services.
If a reward is provided on a regular basis, the brain takes the same as a given, but if the same reward is irregular, the brain is primed to check again and again about the same. This is the same technique that is used in slot machines at gambling casinos.
Social media has been tremendously successful as it has been able to exploit this desire and addiction towards social affirmation, with random, irregular rewards.
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The reward system in our brain exists to ensure we seek out what we need. If eating nutritious food or being smiled at pleases us, we try to secure more of these stimuli. However, seeking pleasure ...
In 1986, a discovery was made that dopamine did not produce pleasure, but in fact, desire. While dopamine makes us want, pleasure comes from opioids and endocannabinoids ( a kind of marijuana produced in the brain), which paints pleasure on good experiences.
We cannot explain away our minds by brain mechanisms. Brain mechanisms are part of our minds.
Understanding that desire and dread, for instance, share the same brain operations, could help ease schizophrenia symptoms by restricting a particular dopamine neuron that produces fear.
If you get excited by the possibility of learning something new and complex, and you get intrigued by nuance and imaginative scenarios you may have an influx of dopamine in your synapses.
Much research on dopamine has been done about its role to desire an "appetitive" reward, such as chocolate, social attention, or gambling. However, people who score high in the tendency toward exploration are prone to find their reward in information, not so much in money or drugs.
If some or all of these statements describe you, you may be highly sensitive to the reward value of information:
Our brains compute 3 things about reward: how much will we get, how soon will we get it, and how certain are we that we will in fact get it.
And it’s when the probability of a re...
Games are enticing because you might win but you might not. And video games do it so efficiently, because they ride the tide of computer technology. The balance between winning and losing is continuously adjusted, according to how well you’re doing, as measured in hits and misses, gains and losses, moment by moment. The sweet spot knows you, it finds you. It adjusts to you.