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Brain injuries can sometimes reveal extraordinary talents in people. Now, savant syndrome is helping to create whole new fields of scientific discovery. Wikimedia Commons
by Maria Popova Insights on identity and the aberrations of authority from the most notorious psychology experiment of all time. Forty years ago today, the Stanford Prison Experiment began — arguably history’s most notorious and controversial psychology experiment, which gleaned powerful and unsettling insights into human nature. Orchestrated by Stanford researcher Philip Zimbardo , the study randomly assigned 24 middle-class college-aged males, recruited via newspaper classifieds and pre-screened to have no mental health issues or criminal history, to the roles of prisoners and prison guards in a hyper-realistic simulated prison environment.
By PAUL J. ZAK Why are some people trustworthy, while others lie, cheat and steal?
A team of California scientists have developed the world's first portable brain scanner , and it may soon be able to "read a person's mind," playing a major role in facilitating medical breakthroughs. "This is very exciting for us because it allows us to have a window into the brain. We're building technology that will allow humanity to have access to the human brain for the first time," said the project's leader, Phillip Low.
A map of neurons of the mouse retina, reconstructed automatically by artificial intelligence from electron microscopic images. A. Zlateski based on data from K. Briggman, M. Helmstaedter, and W. Denk / MIT/Seung
by Maria Popova We’re all about the cross-pollination of disciplines and we’re (naturally) fascinated by the human brain, so today’s release of Portraits of the Mind: Visualizing the Brain from Antiquity to the 21st Century , a book that sources its material in science, roots its aesthetic in art, and reads like a literary anthology, is making us swoon in all kinds of ways. Author Carl Schoonover explores — in breathtaking visual detail — the evolution of humanity’s understanding of the brain, from Medieval sketches to Victorian medical engravings to today’s most elaborate 3D brain mapping. Axon Scaffolding Proteins (Photomicrograph, 2008) | The arrangement of proteins forming the inner scaffolding of axons, captured thanks to genetically engineered antibodies that help researchers study the molecular components neurons like specific types of proteins Image by Michael Hendricks and Suresh Jesuthasan
Controlling the subconscious mind is not something that can be done with force or coercion . Here's an example of what happens when you try to use conscious willpower to "make" your subconscious mind do something... You may remember times when you studied hard for an important test or exam and you were sure that you knew the material well. But when the time came the only thing more blank than the test sheet was your mind.
The 10% of brain myth is the widely perpetuated urban legend that most or all humans only make use of 20%, 10% or some other small percentage of their brains . It has been misattributed to people including Albert Einstein . [ 1 ] By association, it is suggested that a person may harness this unused potential and increase intelligence . Though factors of intelligence can increase with training, [ 2 ] the popular notion that large parts of the brain remain unused, and could subsequently be "activated", rests more in popular folklore than scientific theory. Though mysteries regarding brain function remain—e.g. memory, consciousness — the physiology of brain mapping suggests that most if not all areas of the brain have a function. [ 3 ] [ 4 ] [ edit ] Origin
Claim: We use only ten percent of our brains. Origins: Someone has taken most of your brain away and you probably didn't even know it. Well, not taken your brain away, exactly, but decided that you don't use it.
"One thing I guarantee is that I will leave the audience wondering if they can ever trust their brain again," Prof Hood promised, ahead of his lecture. Source: Supplied THE human brain creates its own version of reality, and the world we see around us is mostly make-believe, according to a top British scientist. Professor Bruce Hood will explore the limits of the human mind in a series of prestigious lectures for the Royal Institution of Great Britain, the oldest independent research body in the world, it was announced yesterday. The psychologist plans to induce false memories in audience members and use pickpockets to demonstrate how easily people are distracted, in a bid to prove how we have less control over our own decisions and perceptions than we like to imagine.
When reading direct quotations, the brain “hears” the voice of the speaker, researchers at the University of Glasgow have found , using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). This shows that readers are likely to engage in perceptual simulations, or spontaneous imagery, of the reported speaker’s voice when reading direct speech, the researchers said. Ref.: Bo Yao, Pascal Belin, and Christoph Scheepers, Silent Reading of Direct versus Indirect Speech Activates Voice-selective Areas in the Auditory Cortex, Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience , 2011; [ DOI:10.1162/jocn_a_00022 ]
The CaMKII molecule has 12 lobes (6 shown here). The number of such complexes at the synapse may increase the amount of memory that can be stored. (Credit: Neal Waxham) Researchers at Brandeis University have discovered a key protein complex that determines how strong a synapse is, and, most likely, how well a memory is stored.
This Artificial Rat Brain Has 12 Seconds of Short-term Memory Ashwin Vishwanathan, Guo-Qiang Bi and Henry C. Zeringue, University of Pittsburgh It’s not artificial intelligence in the Turing test sense, but the technicolor ring you see above is actually an artificial microbrain, derived from rat brain cells --just 40 to 60 neurons in total--that is capable of about 12 seconds of short-term memory. Developed by a team at the University of Pittsburgh, the brain was created in an attempt to artificially nurture a working brain into existence so that researchers could study neural networks and how our brains transmit electrical signals and store data so efficiently. The did so by attaching a layer of proteins to a silicon disk and adding brain cells from embryonic rats that attached themselves to the proteins and grew to connect with one another in the ring seen above.
The rise of psychopharmacology has led doctors to not only treat mental illnesses like regular diseases, but think of them as such as well. Turns out, schizophrenia may be more than just a disease in concept, but actually a virus itself. According to new research, as much as eight percent of the human genome consists of viruses that inserted themselves into our DNA for replication, including the gene that causes schizophrenia.
By Daily Mail Reporter Created 4:03 PM on 24th March 2011 A 12-year-old child prodigy has astounded university professors after grappling with some of the most advanced concepts in mathematics. Jacob Barnett has an IQ of 170 - higher than Albert Einstein - and is now so far advanced in his Indiana university studies that professors are lining him up for a PHD research role.