How well can you track the other cars, cyclists, pedestrians, and all of the other objects moving around you as you drive through a busy intersection? How easy would it be for you to keep an eye on several children at the same time if you were responsible for chaperoning them during a school field trip to ensure they didn’t get into any trouble? How effective are you during a soccer match or basketball game (or other sport) at keeping your eye on the ball while at the same time monitoring all of the other players?
The ability to track multiple objects by dividing your attention is a requirement in each of the above scenarios. Our Target Tracker exercise requires you to track several items that are moving around your screen at the same time, thereby helping to build divided attention.
In Target Tracker:
- You will first see a few target objects appear on your screen such as jellyfish, puffer fish, or bubbles.
- Eventually you’ll be faced with “distractors” that are added to the screen including more jellyfish, puffer fish, and bubbles.
- You’ll need to keep track of specific targets as the different objects move around your screen.
- Finally, you’ll click on each target once the objects stop moving in order to identify each one correctly.
The exercise will get more challenging as you move through the levels. As you improve you'll discover that:
- Objects travel more quickly over larger areas for longer amounts of time.
- It becomes harder to track targets as the contrast between the background and the moving objects decreases.
- The number of objects to track will increase or decrease as the exercise for your brain adapts to your performance. When you perform well you’ll track more objects and when you struggle you’ll track fewer objects.
Whether you are navigating a crowded mall, bicycling down a busy street or experiencing any other motion-filled visual activity, it is important that you feel sharper and are able to take in all the action around you.