In today’s highly competitive world, people are constantly looking for ways to make their minds sharper in order to gain an advantage. Others may also want to keep their minds in good shape as they age. Whatever your reason may be, finding programs which can fulfill that role may sometimes be a little difficult.
Linux users have nothing to worry about, however, as there’s a program that will challenge your brain no matter how long you’ve used it. Additionally, it’s quite easy to find and install, so there’s absolutely no excuse for you not to try it out!
gbrainy is a program that used to come by default with distributions who focused on the Gnome desktop environment, such as Ubuntu. It offers different activities you can go through to keep your mind razor sharp with just a few minutes. It’s actively developed with new versions being released regularly.
To install gbrainy, simply search your package manager for “gbrainy”, as most distributions have it under that package name. For those who like to do things in the terminal, Ubuntu users can install it with
sudo apt-get install gbrainy while Fedora users can install it with
sudo yum install gbrainy.
When you first launch gbrainy, you’ll be presented with a screen of the different activities you can go through. Although it’s only four different activities, they should be more than enough as each activity is different every time.
Logic problems included in gbrainy, if I may say so, are hard. It’s not that I don’t understand the question, but sometimes you’re completely wrong with an answer choice when you think you’re completely right. Despite that bit of frustration, these definitely make you think twice about everything and offer your brain quite the exercise.
Calculation in gbrainy is probably what you’d expect it to be – a whole lot of math. Some questions are easier, while some are harder. For example, one question I had while trying gbrainy out was “How many of the number ‘9’ are there in the range 10-100?” The answer? 19. I definitely did not know that.
Did I mention that everything you do in gbrainy is timed? Therefore, even if you’re somehow a pro at everything gbrainy can throw at you, you still have yourself to beat.
The memory category is obviously a collection of a bunch of memorization activities. Don’t let that fool you, though, as it starts messing with you when you have to remember an 8×8 square of colored dots. Of course, it’s not a challenge unless the answer choices that follow all look very similar to one another.
The verbal category reminds me a little bit of the logic category as you’ll need some common sense and word knowledge to successfully pass this area. If you’re having too much trouble, it may be helpful to cheat a little to begin with and have a dictionary or online reference nearby to look at when necessary.
Once you’ve had enough brain exercise for a day, you can hit “End” on the left panel. You’ll then be presented with a summary of the activities you’ve worked through and how well (or bad) you’ve done. This is good for self reference so you can track how much you improve over time. Or you can choose to simply use it for bragging rights.
gbrainy is, although sometimes frustrating because of how quickly it makes you feel dumb, quite entertaining and, dare I say, addictive. gbrainy also comes with an “All” button so you can randomize what activities you’re doing to give your brain the best workout possible. The program also has a few settings you can configure, including the difficulty level. Although that’s extremely useful, it doesn’t change how frustrating it can be. All my frustration rants came while I was on “easy”.
Do you enjoy train your brain programs like gbrainy? What’s a similar program for other platforms? Let us know in the comments!