This brain training app may help you stay focused, says new study

Cambridge University researchers developed the game Decoder to improve people's ability to concentrate.

(CNN)Our digital lives make concentration difficult. Everybody has experienced working on a task, then being interrupted by the swooshing sound of the email icon popping up, only to be side-tracked by the pinging notification of a text on our smartphones, or digital watches. By the time we return to our original project it feels as if we have to start all over, because we have lost our train of thought.

A group of Cambridge university researchers believes to have developed a "fun" solution to this modern problem. By playing a "brain training" game, called Decoder, players can increase their concentration. This success, they claim, has been backed up by scientific tests.
The inspiration behind the game for lead researcher Barbara Sahakian, professor of clinical neuropsychology at Cambridge University, came from the large number of people who come to her with difficulties concentrating.
    We are "always shifting our attention between these technological things that we have in front of us" like laptops and phones, trying to complete multiple jobs at the same time, she said. "People are not working effectively because they can't direct their attention to one big problem."
    The Decoder game asks players to detect sequences of numbers, like 2-4-6, 3-5-7, 4-6-8. Using an Indiana Jones or James Bond like theme, the game asks players to decode number sequences which direct them to clues that solve missions.
    "It's quite good fu