Brain chemistry on buying

Just posting this since it’s around time I would be lured to get a PS4 in order to play the best version of Metal Gear Solid V Ground Zeroes ^^;

From HowStuffWorks:

The results were so standardized that the researchers were a bit stunned. When a product image flashed, the area of the brain called the nucleus accumbens lit up if the subject liked what he or she saw. That means there was increased neural firing in that area of brain, which is the “pleasure center” of the brain with lots of dopamine receptors that make for feelings of happiness and excitement in anticipation of a nice event. This is the first result: The nucleus accumbens experiences an increase in activity — an anticipation of pleasure — when consumers like what they see.

The second image, the one showing the price, triggered a different part of the brain, and it’s this brain activity that let researchers know if the subject would buy the product before the subject was even aware of having made a decision. When the price appeared, the insula either lit up, or it didn’t. The insula is sort of the opposite of the pleasure center. Its neurons start firing when you realize you’re about to slam your finger in a door, for instance. When the insula lit up, the subject ultimately decided not to buy the product. When the insula did not light up, and the nucleus accumbens had been activated on viewing the product, the subject eventually decided to buy it. This is the second result of the­ study: When neurons start firing in the insula, the decision not to make the purchase has been made on an unconscious level, based on the anticipation of pain. The conscious decision comes a bit later, and it always follows the unconscious decision made by the insula.

The problem for some subjects was that insula almost never lit up, and they went home with none of the $40 cash they’d been given at the start of the experiment. These, most likely, would be the people with the jaw-dropping credit card bills. Or 12 pairs of black pumps. The researchers plan to perform a similar study involving people with compulsive-shopping habits to see how their brains compare to the general population.


Hope my insula lit up… ^^;

Also, about a trick called Ulysses Pact:

The term refers to the pact that Ulysses (Greek name “Ὀδυσσεύς”, Odysseus) made with his men as they approached the Sirens. Ulysses wanted to hear the Sirens’ song although he knew that doing so would render him incapable of rational thought. He put wax in his men’s ears so that they could not hear, and had them tie him to the mast so that he could not jump into the sea. He ordered them not to change course under any circumstances, and to keep their swords upon him to attack him if he should break free of his bonds.

Upon hearing the Sirens’ song, Ulysses was driven temporarily insane and struggled with all of his might to break free so that he might join the Sirens, which would have meant his death.


I might have unconsciously created a Ulysses pact by preordering the PS3 version of the game, from a store that doesn’t allow preorder cancellation even. It is shipping together with Neptune Re;Birth 2 ^^;

But I wouldn’t be surprised if I were ‘driven temporarily insane’ and try to get PS4 version along with a PS4 even though I’m already getting PS3 version.

Lastly, here is an extract of chapter 6 of possibly the best Neptune manga adaptation (Hello New World):







This one would be in volume 2 when it’s released.


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