The Philosophy of Neuroscience First published Mon Jun 7, 1999; substantive revision Tue May 25, 2010 Over the past three decades, philosophy of science has grown increasingly “local.” Concerns have switched from general features of scientific practice to concepts, issues, and puzzles specific to particular disciplines. Philosophy of neuroscience is a natural result. This emerging area was also spurred by remarkable recent growth in the neurosciences. The literature distinguishes “philosophy of neuroscience” and “neurophilosophy.” 1. Contrary to some opinion, actual neuroscientific discoveries have exerted little influence on the details of materialist philosophies of mind. The apology for this lacuna by early identity theorists was that neuroscience at that time was too nascent to provide any plausible identities. Philosophical indifference to neuroscientific detail became “principled” with the rise and prominence of functionalism in the 1970s. 2. Eliminative materialism (EM) is the conjunction of two claims.
The Neuroscience of Decision Making In an attempt to put matter over mind, researchers are beginning to decipher what exactly is happening in our brains when we are making decisions. Our thoughts, though abstract and vaporous in form, are determined by the actions of specific neuronal circuits in our brains. The interdisciplinary field known as “decision neuroscience” is uncovering those circuits, thereby mapping thinking on a cellular level. Although still a young field, research in this area has exploded in the last decade, with findings suggesting it is possible to parse out the complexity of thinking into its individual components and decipher how they are integrated when we ponder. Eventually, such findings will lead to a better understanding of a wide range of mental disorders, from depression to schizophrenia, as well as explain how exactly we make the multitude of decisions that ultimately shape our destiny. The following is an edited transcript of the teleconference. C. WANG: Yes.
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Neuroscience Neuroscience is the scientific study of the nervous system. Traditionally, neuroscience has been seen as a branch of biology. However, it is currently an interdisciplinary science that collaborates with other fields such as chemistry, computer science, engineering, linguistics, mathematics, medicine and allied disciplines, philosophy, physics, and psychology. It also exerts influence on other fields, such as neuroeducation and neurolaw. The term neurobiology is usually used interchangeably with the term neuroscience, although the former refers specifically to the biology of the nervous system, whereas the latter refers to the entire science of the nervous system. Because of the increasing number of scientists who study the nervous system, several prominent neuroscience organizations have been formed to provide a forum to all neuroscientists and educators. History The study of the nervous system dates back to ancient Egypt. Modern neuroscience Human nervous system
Neuroscientists reveal magicians' secrets - Technology & science - Science - LiveScience NEW YORK — There is a place for magic in science. Five years ago, on a trip to Las Vegas, neuroscientists Stephen Macknik and Susana Martinez-Conde realized that a partnership was in order with a profession that has an older and more intuitive understanding of how the human brain works. Magicians, it seems, have an advantage over neuroscientists. "Scientists have only studied cognitive illusions for a few decades. She and Macknik, her husband, use illusions as a tool to study how the brain works. After their epiphany in Las Vegas, where they were preparing for a conference on consciousness, the duo, who both direct laboratories at the Barrow Neurological Institute in Arizona, teamed up with magicians to learn just how they harness the foibles of our brains. The psychological concepts behind illusions are generally better understood, but they treat the brain as something of a black box, without the insight into brain activity or anatomy that neuroscience can offer, they write.
Tá Falado: Brazilian Portuguese Pronunciation for Speakers of Spanish by College of Liberal Arts, University of Texas at Austin Do mirror neurons explain understanding, or is it the other way round? – Neurologism (Alternate title: In Soviet Russia, Mirror Neurons Explain YOU!) A draft of this post has been sitting around for a few weeks, and while I’m happy with today’s sanity check, I still can’t help but suspect that I am missing something in the debate on “action understanding”. So I am happy to be convinced that I have completely misunderstood some key aspect of the mirror neuron story. Mirror neuron “theory” strikes me as an odd mix of interesting experimental results and ambiguous reasoning. Nevertheless, I think the popularity of the mirror neuron idea serves as an opportunity to talk about some ideas that are hard to work into neuroscience writing aimed at a general, non-mathematical audience. First of all, what exactly are mirror neurons? People often refer to mirror neurons as the basis of empathy, based on the idea that our understanding of other people’s actions and feelings depends on our ability to imitate or emulate the feelings of others. I see what you’re doing there! Notes
The Pentagon of Neuroscience — An Infographic/Listicle for Understanding the Neuroculture – Neurologism Click here to go straight to the infographic. It should open in Firefox and Chrome. Neuroscience has hit the big time. Every day, popular newspapers, websites and blogs offer up a heady stew of brain-related self-help (neuro-snake oil?) Predictably, the boldest claims tend to oversimplify and exaggerate scientific results, which are complex, provisional, tentative, and often mutually contradictory. the difficulty of the science,the growth of funding,the intractability of the never-far-away philosophical issues, andthe insatiable appetite for both neuro-tidbits and neuro-antacid among the secular educated classes, the neuro trend is likely to continue for the foreseeable future, like a chattering neuron. Se we might as well sit back and enjoy the show, right? In order to make sense of the plots and intrigues in the palace of brain sciences, it is worth contemplating the sheer diversity of traditions that take up residence within its walls. Notes: Like this: Like Loading...
Everything I Know: 42 Hours of Buckminster Fuller's Visionary Lectures Free Online (1975) Think of the name Buckminster Fuller, and you may think of a few oddities of mid-twentieth-century design for living: the Dymaxion House, the Dymaxion Car, the geodesic dome. But these artifacts represent only a small fragment of Fuller’s life and work as a self-styled “comprehensive anticipatory design scientist.” In his decades-long project of developing and furthering his worldview — an elaborate humanitarian framework involving resource conservation, applied geometry, and neologisms like “tensegrity,” “ephemeralization,” and “omni-interaccommodative” — the man wrote over 30 books, registered 28 United States patents, and kept a diary documenting his every fifteen minutes. In January 1975, Fuller sat down to deliver the twelve lectures that make up Everything I Know, all captured on video and enhanced with the most exciting bluescreen technology of the day. Parts 1-12 on the Internet Archive: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 Parts 1-6 on YouTube: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 Related Content:
How Brainwave Optimization Works - Brain Training Centers The human brain works on electricity, which is generated by the brain in order to complete its tasks. The electricity is measured in hertz. One hertz is one energy wave per second. The human brain functions utilizing between 0 to 60 hertz each and every second. In order to perform brainwave optimization with real time balancing™, an electroencephalogram (EEG) is performed. Accordingly, for the point where the electrode is recording, whenever the brain produces a frequency band of 1, it hears the same tone, and for 2 it hears another tone that is always the same when it produces a 2 wave frequency band. The computer continues to monitor and mirror the brain until the behavioral algorithms signal that the brain knows it is being “mirrored”. The brainwave optimization system utilizes this programming to speak to brains to train them to function more optimally. The subconscious (sometimes called the unconscious) part of our brain generates the electricity to perform all functions.
What does fMRI measure, anyway? – Neurologism In the previous post, I began discussing functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), a popular but controversial experimental technique that allows researchers to investigate brain activity in humans and animals in a relatively safe and non-invasive way. But I found myself commenting more on the problems associated with statistical methods. While these problems are important to acknowledge and deal with, they are not specific to fMRI. In this post I hope to leave stats aside, and examine some of the biophysical assumptions underlying interpretations of fMRI studies. For some years I had been ignoring fMRI papers because of the myriad problems of interpretation, but a recent paper from Aniruddha Das’s group at Columbia University (Cardoso et al., 2012) rekindled my curiosity, and spurred me to survey the literature on the links between neural activity, blood flow, and metabolism in the brain. “It’s a long way from behaviour to BOLD.” Notes: References Singh, K. Sirotin, Y. Bekar, L.