TEDsters, get ready to play Brain Games

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Brain-GamesYour brain is three and a half pounds of tissue — and yet it’s the key to everything you experience. The National Geographic Channel show Brain Games seeks to give a better understanding of it – by looking at how the brain focuses, processes fears, makes decisions and much more. The show is hosted by Jason Silva, the “performance philosopher” who creates fast-moving films about ideas – like this exploration of last year’s TEDGlobal theme, “Radical Openness.”

Brain Games returns to the air next Monday, April 22, with the episode “Focus Pocus.” In the episode, TEDGlobal 2013 speaker Apollo Robbins, the “gentleman thief,” joins Silva and psychologist Brian Scholl, director of Yale University’s Perception and Cognition Lab, for a look at how the brain focuses on important details – or at least, those it thinks are important.

Below, watch Silva talk about how we focus — and over-extend our focus — in today’s media landscape:

And Robbins describes how he uses the brain’s tools of focus for sleight-of-hand and, in the process, makes a pen disappear: