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Cognitive Training Method for Enhancing Semantic Processing (ProCog)
Start date: Jan 1, 2013, End date: Dec 31, 2013 PROJECT  FINISHED 

"The ""Word Game"" is an innovative cognitive training program for improving linguistic comprehension abilities. The novel training method was developed as part of the INSPIRE ERC research project, and it is based on theories and empirical findings that describe the role of the brain's right hemisphere in semantic processing. A controlled experiment showed that after ten training sessions, on a seemingly fun and challenging computer game, healthy adults showed improved semantic performance transferred to tasks that were not trained directly.ProCog’s objective is to take the first steps in the commercialization of Word Game as an online training application. The growing market of software-based brain enhancement tools does not offer any solution for enhancing semantic functions in healthy adults, though research shows these abilities are essential for language comprehension, that they decline with age, and are sub-optimal among many. Using Word Game will benefit individuals' thinking and comprehension abilities, allowing them to better understand conversations and texts in daily life, draw inferences from partial verbal information, and use language creatively by “connecting the dots” in unusual ways. These benefits go beyond the individual gain of end-users, and could impact intelligence analysis, scholarship, art, and the quality of life of the elderly. All these populations constitute the consumer segments targeted in ProCog.To take Word Game from the lab to the world, the ProCog PoC will: Create a business plan and marketing strategy based on market analysis and evaluation of possible collaborations with existing cognitive training providers; Peruse legal aspects of IPR protection; Implement marketing activities and links with investors and potential partners; and Finalize the development of a web-based platform with an English version of Word Game.Thus, ProCog’s outcome will provide a new arsenal for enhancing the capabilities of the associative mind."

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