London taxi’s [sic] originally uploaded by walking with a ghost
Scientists have uncovered evidence for an inbuilt “sat-nav” system in the brains of London taxi drivers.
They used magnetic scanners to explore the brain activity of taxi drivers as they navigated their way through a virtual simulation of London’s streets.
Different brain regions were activated as they considered route options, spotted familiar landmarks or thought about their customers.
The research was presented at this week’s BA Science Festival.
Earlier studies had shown that taxi drivers have a larger hippocampus – a region of the brain that plays an important role in navigation.
Their brains even “grow on the job” as they build up detailed information needed to find their way around London’s labyrinth of streets – information famously referred to as “The Knowledge”.