One of the really amazing things about the export performance literature by Ericsson, Charness, and others
is that it comes out of a tradition in psychology--individual differences psychology--that very readily defaults to genetic explanations and very readily ignores possible environmental explanations of the same individual differences. Ericsson's experimental results in training digit span (which is part of the item content of same IQ test batteries) were completely surprising when published in peer-reviewed journals--no one ever imagined that digit span
was such a malleable ability.
But digit span, which is malleable (trainable), is closely related to the "working memory capacity" that the authors are implicitly claiming is not malleable. That is not at all clear, and much experimental work suggests that working memory capacity is more malleable than the authors acknowledge in this opinion piece.
Also on-point here is pg's comment from his essay "What You'll Wish You'd Known"
"I'm not saying there's no such thing as genius. But if you're trying to choose between two theories and one gives you an excuse for being lazy, the other one is probably right."
Anyways, for anyone interested in N-Back games, check out the Brain Workshop software and website.
I think I'm gonna try doing it for a few minutes every day and see what happens. When I was younger I used to be able to remember everything vividly very effortlessly and I envy that again.