This new brain map shows almost 100 areas never described before You don’t have to be a neurosurgeon to know it’s hard to get to the right place without a good map. But neuroscientists have been blundering around with blurry brain maps, which sometimes aren’t very detailed, or omit important functions. That’s why a new map is so exciting — it shows nearly 100 areas that hadn’t been reported before. The map, described in a study published today in Nature, is a detailed look at the part of the brain that handles all your senses, as well as your motion — plus some other functions like problem solving and emotional regulation. It’s called the cerebral cortex, and it’s the brain’s outer layer of nerve tissue. Think of it as "a sheet about the size of a large pizza, and about the thickness of the cardboard under the pizza," says David McCormick, a neuroscience and psychology professor at Yale.
Alice Goffman: How we're priming some kids for college — and others for prison Close Help with subtitles Desktop / laptop users: please make sure you have the most updated versions of your browser and Flash player, and that Flash is enabled when you visit TED.com. iOS users: to access subtitles, start playing the video, then tap the speech bubble icon that appears in the bottom row of video controls. Android users: although Android devices do not support subtitles, you can download the TED app from the Google Play store. 20 Wonderful Effects Exercise Has on the Mind Studies find exercise increases stress resilience, fights anxiety, speeds up the mind, protects against dementia, is more fun than we predict, and more… If everyone got a little exercise, we could put half the doctors in the world out of a job. But it’s not just doctors who’d be out of a job if people could take the stairs every now and then, it’s also psychologists. Here are 20 wonderful psychological effects that exercise has on the mind.
Open Thinking Wiki Exploring Web 2.0: Blogs, Wikis, Podcasts & Social Sharing MySpace, IM and Other Social Networks The Impact of Digital Literacies on Education “The new literacies include the skills, strategies, and insights necessary to successfully exploit the rapidly changing information and communication technologies that continuously emerge in our world. A more precise definition of the new literacies may never be possible to achieve since their most important characteristic is that they regularly change; as new technologies for information and communication continually appear, new literacies emerge (Bruce, 1997; Leu, in press a; Reinking, 1998). Moreover, these changes often take place faster than we are able to completely evaluate them.
New Method of High-Resolution Whole-Brain Staining A new staining method closes one of the last methodological gaps: Now it’s possible to map every nerve cell and its synapses in a mouse brain. Researchers from the Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology have developed a special staining method that brings the reconstruction of all nerve cells and their connections within reach. Learning, it is widely believed is based on changes in the connections between nerve cells. You can increase your intelligence: 5 ways to maximize your cognitive potential The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American. "One should not pursue goals that are easily achieved. One must develop an instinct for what one can just barely achieve through one’s greatest efforts."
300+ Mind Expanding Documentaries I watch a lot of documentaries. I think they are incredible tools for learning and increasing our awareness of important issues. The power of an interesting documentary is that it can open our minds to new possibilities and deepen our understanding of the world. On this list of mind expanding documentaries you will find different viewpoints, controversial opinions and even contradictory ideas. From decisions to disorders: how neuroscience is changing what we know about ourselves People have wanted to understand our motivations, thoughts and behaviours since the ancient Greeks inscribed “know thyself” on the Temple of Apollo at Delphi. And understanding the brain’s place in health and disease is one of this century’s greatest challenges – take Alzheimer’s, dementia and depression for example. There are many exciting contributions from neuroscience that have given insight into our thoughts and actions. Three neuroscientists have just been awarded the 2014 Nobel Prize for their discoveries of cells that act as a positioning system in the brain – in other words, the mechanism that allows us to navigate spaces using spatial information and memory at a cellular level. There are many exciting contributions from neuroscience that have given insight into our thoughts and actions.
Overview of learning styles Many people recognize that each person prefers different learning styles and techniques. Learning styles group common ways that people learn. Everyone has a mix of learning styles. Some people may find that they have a dominant style of learning, with far less use of the other styles. Others may find that they use different styles in different circumstances. There is no right mix. Energy and Calm: Brain Breaks and Focused-Attention Practices When presented with new material, standards, and complicated topics, we need to be focused and calm as we approach our assignments. We can use brain breaks and focused-attention practices to positively impact our emotional states and learning. They refocus our neural circuitry with either stimulating or quieting practices that generate increased activity in the prefrontal cortex, where problem solving and emotional regulation occur. Brain Breaks A brain break is a short period of time when we change up the dull routine of incoming information that arrives via predictable, tedious, well-worn roadways. Our brains are wired for novelty.
The science world is freaking out over this 25-year-old's answer to antibiotic resistance A 25-year-old student has just come up with a way to fight drug-resistant superbugs without antibiotics. The new approach has so far only been tested in the lab and on mice, but it could offer a potential solution to antibiotic resistance, which is now getting so bad that the United Nations recently declared it a "fundamental threat" to global health. Antibiotic-resistant bacteria already kill around 700,000 people each year, but a recent study suggests that number could rise to around 10 million by 2050. In addition to common hospital superbug, methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), scientists are now also concerned that gonorrhoea is about to become resistant to all remaining drugs. But Shu Lam, a 25-year-old PhD student at the University of Melbourne in Australia, has developed a star-shaped polymer that can kill six different superbug strains without antibiotics, simply by ripping apart their cell walls.
Glee for Glia Marijuana affects memory… through astrocytes! The results of this elegant study published in the recent issue of Cell are the first to show that astrocytes play a key role in modulating neuronal activity and working memory. From medicalnewstoday.com A major downside of the medical use of marijuana is the drug’s ill effects on working memory, the ability to transiently hold and process information for reasoning, comprehension and learning.
Chaos theory A double rod pendulum animation showing chaotic behavior. Starting the pendulum from a slightly different initial condition would result in a completely different trajectory. The double rod pendulum is one of the simplest dynamical systems that has chaotic solutions. Chaos: When the present determines the future, but the approximate present does not approximately determine the future. Chaotic behavior can be observed in many natural systems, such as weather and climate. This behavior can be studied through analysis of a chaotic mathematical model, or through analytical techniques such as recurrence plots and Poincaré maps.