London Cabbies' Driving Brain PowerAired March 14, 2000 - 2:39 p.m. ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
NATALIE ALLEN, CNN ANCHOR: Well, they drive on the wrong side of the road, but London cabbies are pretty bright people. Scientists found the portion of the brain that deals with navigation got bigger in London cabbies.
Neil Connery of Britain's Independent Television News has the findings.
NEIL CONNERY, ITN REPORTER (voice-over): Renowned for being good talkers, London cabbies now have something else to boast about. According to experts from University College London part of a cabbies' brain is streets ahead from the rest of us. The scientists found that the 16 cabbies who had brain scans had a larger hypocampus, that is area of the brain linked to navigation.
UNIDENTIFIED CABBIE: I am a professor in cabology. My mother always wanted me to have an -ology, so I have got one.
UNIDENTIFIED CABBIE: I don't think that's -- No, I don't think so, no. It's -- just look around at the cab drivers, they are just ordinary people really.
UNIDENTIFIED CABBIE: When you do the knowledge, you learn more in one year than a medical student does in three.
CONNERY: Cabbies spend on average two years doing the knowledge, which tests their grasp of London's geography.
UNIDENTIFIED CABBIE: See what some of the present day knowledge boys are asked and I wonder: Could I do it? I wouldn't like to do it again.
CONNERY: So cabbie are now officially recognized for ranking higher than most in terms of brain power. What better way then to relax at the end of that busy shift navigating through the streets of London then expanding that knowledge even further with a quick fare to the library.
Neil Connery, ITN.
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