When we utilize computers and other visual aids to do arithmetic calculations, several of our cognitive and computational abilities atrophy. We must exercise them in order to keep them strong. The simple process of doing arithmetic in your head allows you to visualize and to memorize. Many studies have shown that this rather simple exercise is one of the best ways to delay the onset of dementia and a number of other physiological manifestations of diminished mental capacity.
Do the following example in your head...no using fingers to draw in the air, or using of any other external physical processes (especially whispering the numbers to yourself0. I'll get you your answer tomorrow. Go ahead. Try this simple one [by the way, you'll actually find it confusing to look at the numbers on this page at the same time you visualize the computations in your head. With practice, this problem can be eliminated by simply taking a mental "photograph" of the numbers, closing your eyes and dedicating your mind to doing all of the work internally.
3 + 8 - 5 + 9 - 2 + 12 - 4 + 13 - 6 = ?
See you tomorrow, Braintenance Barons (and Baronesses).