Author Topic: All things brain...  (Read 10053 times)

Recusant

  • Miscreant Erendrake
  • Administrator
  • Wears a Colander Hat for Special Occasions
  • *****
  • Posts: 6148
  • Gender: Male
  • infidel barbarian
Re: All things brain...
« Reply #135 on: November 05, 2018, 03:33:48 PM »
Here's an article that puts forward the idea that consciousness is produced by an ongoing complex feedback loop of energy in the brain. The paper written by the author of the article is also linked below.

"How a trippy 1980s video effect might help to explain consciousness" | The Conversation

Quote
Explaining consciousness is one of the hardest problems in science and philosophy. Recent neuroscientific discoveries suggest that a solution could be within reach – but grasping it will mean rethinking some familiar ideas. Consciousness, I argue in a new paper, may be caused by the way the brain generates loops of energetic feedback, similar to the video feedback that “blossoms” when a video camera is pointed at its own output.

I first saw video feedback in the late 1980s and was instantly entranced. Someone plugged the signal from a clunky video camera into a TV and pointed the lens at the screen, creating a grainy spiralling tunnel. Then the camera was tilted slightly and the tunnel blossomed into a pulsating organic kaleidoscope.

Video feedback is a classic example of complex dynamical behaviour. It arises from the way energy circulating in the system interacts chaotically with the electronic components of the hardware.

[. . .]


Video feedback may be the nearest we have to visualising what conscious processing in the brain is like.
Still from video feedback sequence. Image Credit: Robert Pepperell, 2018

[Continues . . .]

"Religion is fundamentally opposed to everything I hold in veneration — courage, clear thinking, honesty, fairness, and above all, love of the truth."
— H. L. Mencken


xSilverPhinx

  • Non Dvcor
  • Administrator
  • Luxembourg Trembles!
  • *****
  • Posts: 16019
  • Gender: Female
  • I Spy With My Googly Eyes...
Re: All things brain...
« Reply #136 on: November 05, 2018, 06:59:11 PM »
^ An interesting idea.
Give no mercy to your fear.



Recusant

  • Miscreant Erendrake
  • Administrator
  • Wears a Colander Hat for Special Occasions
  • *****
  • Posts: 6148
  • Gender: Male
  • infidel barbarian
Re: All things brain...
« Reply #137 on: November 05, 2018, 07:26:28 PM »
^ An interesting idea.

 :sidesmile: I am a happy pup.

"Religion is fundamentally opposed to everything I hold in veneration — courage, clear thinking, honesty, fairness, and above all, love of the truth."
— H. L. Mencken


xSilverPhinx

  • Non Dvcor
  • Administrator
  • Luxembourg Trembles!
  • *****
  • Posts: 16019
  • Gender: Female
  • I Spy With My Googly Eyes...
Re: All things brain...
« Reply #138 on: November 05, 2018, 10:27:29 PM »
Give no mercy to your fear.



Icarus

  • The wise one.
  • Guardian of Reason
  • *****
  • Posts: 5532
Re: All things brain...
« Reply #139 on: November 06, 2018, 10:52:40 PM »
Superdog who is happy to do his thing.  Note the wagging tail.   That gif makes me smile

xSilverPhinx

  • Non Dvcor
  • Administrator
  • Luxembourg Trembles!
  • *****
  • Posts: 16019
  • Gender: Female
  • I Spy With My Googly Eyes...
Re: All things brain...
« Reply #140 on: November 07, 2018, 08:39:51 PM »
Give no mercy to your fear.



Recusant

  • Miscreant Erendrake
  • Administrator
  • Wears a Colander Hat for Special Occasions
  • *****
  • Posts: 6148
  • Gender: Male
  • infidel barbarian
Re: All things brain...
« Reply #141 on: February 26, 2019, 01:43:34 AM »
Great progress if accurate. Now to find some way to address it.

"Brain discovery explains a great mystery of Alzheimer's, Parkinson's" | ScienceDaily

Quote
One of the great mysteries of neuroscience may finally have an answer: Scientists at the University of Virginia School of Medicine have identified a potential explanation for the mysterious death of specific brain cells seen in Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and other neurodegenerative diseases.

The new research suggests that the cells may die because of naturally occurring gene variation in brain cells that were, until recently, assumed to be genetically identical. This variation -- called "somatic mosaicism" -- could explain why neurons in the temporal lobe are the first to die in Alzheimer's, for example, and why dopaminergic neurons are the first to die in Parkinson's.

"This has been a big open question in neuroscience, particularly in various neurodegenerative diseases," said neuroscientist Michael McConnell, PhD, of UVA's Center for Brain Immunology and Glia (BIG). "What is this selective vulnerability? What underlies it? And so now, with our work, the hypotheses moving forward are that it could be that different regions of the brain actually have a different garden of these [variations] in young individuals and that sets up different regions for decline later in life."

[Continues . . .]
"Religion is fundamentally opposed to everything I hold in veneration — courage, clear thinking, honesty, fairness, and above all, love of the truth."
— H. L. Mencken


Icarus

  • The wise one.
  • Guardian of Reason
  • *****
  • Posts: 5532
Re: All things brain...
« Reply #142 on: March 03, 2019, 09:26:20 PM »
Here is a discussion about handedness, that is left handed/right handed and how brain regions may influence the preferences.
https://getpocket.com/explore/item/the-evolutionary-mystery-of-left-handedness-and-what-it-reveals-about-how-the-brain-works.

Recusant

  • Miscreant Erendrake
  • Administrator
  • Wears a Colander Hat for Special Occasions
  • *****
  • Posts: 6148
  • Gender: Male
  • infidel barbarian
Re: All things brain...
« Reply #143 on: March 04, 2019, 04:03:22 PM »
Thanks for posting that link, Icarus. The author mentions a Scots fighter from the Kerr family. In my reading about the history of the Borders, I read about the Kerrs, who were a fairly prominent family. They were known for being left-handed, which points to some degree of heritability. On the other hand ( ;) ) the article mentions the example of Charles Darwin, a left-handed man who married a left-handed woman, yet only two of their ten children were left-handed. In my own family there is a couple who are both left-handed, while both of their children are right-handed.

A story in which the functions of the two hemispheres of the brain is examined (the site apparently puts up a paywall after one article unless you sign up, but should be accessible):

"The Brain That Remade Itself" | OneZero

Quote
[Tanner] Collins was three months shy of seven years old when surgeons sliced open his skull and removed a third of his brain’s right hemisphere. For two years prior, a benign tumor had been growing in the back of his brain, eventually reaching the size of a golf ball. The tumor caused a series of disruptive seizures that gave him migraines and kept him from school. Medications did little to treat the problem and made Collins drowsy. By the day of his surgery, Collins was experiencing daily seizures that were growing in severity. He would collapse and be incontinent and sometimes vomit, he says.

[. . .]

Surgeons cut out the entire right occipital lobe and half of the temporal lobe of Collins’ brain. Those lobes are important for processing the information that passes through our eyes’ optic nerves, allowing us to see. These regions are also critical for recognizing faces and objects and attaching corresponding names. There was no way of being sure whether Collins would ever see again, recognize his parents, or even develop normally after the surgery.

And then the miraculous happened: Despite the loss of more than 15 percent of his brain, Collins turned out to be fine.

The one exception is the loss of peripheral vision in his left eye. Though this means Collins will never legally be able to drive, he compensates for his blind spot by moving his head around, scanning a room to create a complete picture. “It’s not like it’s blurred or it’s just black there. It’s, like, all blended,” Collins tells me when I visit him at home in January. “So, it’s like a Bob Ross painting.”

Today, Collins is a critical puzzle piece in an ongoing study of how the human brain can change. That’s because his brain has done something remarkable: The left side has assumed all the responsibilities and tasks of his now largely missing right side.

[Continues . . .]

"Religion is fundamentally opposed to everything I hold in veneration — courage, clear thinking, honesty, fairness, and above all, love of the truth."
— H. L. Mencken


Icarus

  • The wise one.
  • Guardian of Reason
  • *****
  • Posts: 5532
Re: All things brain...
« Reply #144 on: March 06, 2019, 12:12:52 AM »
Here is some more "brain stuff" with  slightly different implications.   https://getpocket.com/explore/item/secrets-of-the-creative-brain

Since all we HAFers have clearly superior creative brain functions, we may all be destined to reside in the loony bin.   :query:

xSilverPhinx

  • Non Dvcor
  • Administrator
  • Luxembourg Trembles!
  • *****
  • Posts: 16019
  • Gender: Female
  • I Spy With My Googly Eyes...
Re: All things brain...
« Reply #145 on: March 06, 2019, 01:13:02 PM »
Here is some more "brain stuff" with  slightly different implications.   https://getpocket.com/explore/item/secrets-of-the-creative-brain

Since all we HAFers have clearly superior creative brain functions, we may all be destined to reside in the loony bin.   :query:

Very interesting, Icarus!  :studious:
Give no mercy to your fear.



Recusant

  • Miscreant Erendrake
  • Administrator
  • Wears a Colander Hat for Special Occasions
  • *****
  • Posts: 6148
  • Gender: Male
  • infidel barbarian
Re: All things brain...
« Reply #146 on: March 26, 2019, 03:20:00 PM »
Posting a link here to a story mentioned by Icarus in another thread:

"Breakthrough brain implant harnesses mind power to help paralysed people gain more independence" | ABC

Quote
A new kind of brain implant that can sense a patient's intent to move a robotic arm is being hailed as a breakthrough in harnessing mind power to help paralysed people gain more independence.

A study in the journal Science has reported on the technology, which uses electrodes implanted in the brain to transmit signals to a computer and translate those signals into instructions for a robotic arm.

For people like Erik Sorto, who was left paralysed from the neck down when he was shot in the back more than a decade ago, it means he is finally able to drink a beverage by himself.

"That was amazing. I was waiting for that for 13 years, to drink a beer by myself," he said.

[Continues . . .]




Another link, this time about a newly developed taxonomy of brain cells.

"An Objective Classification Algorithm For Brain Cells" | Reliawire

Quote
A new system for distinguishing cell types in the brain, has been announced by the Blue Brain Project. It represents an algorithmic classification method that the researchers say will benefit the entire field of neuroscience.

Quote
For nearly 100 years, scientists have been trying to name cells. They have been describing them in the same way that Darwin described animals and trees. Now, the Blue Brain Project has developed a mathematical algorithm to objectively classify the shapes of the neurons in the brain. This will allow the development of a standardized taxonomy [classification of cells into distinct groups] of all cells in the brain, which will help researchers compare their data in a more reliable manner.

[. . .]

The team, led by Lida Kanari of École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne, developed an algorithm to distinguish the shapes of the most common type of neuron in the neocortex, the pyramidal cells.

Pyramidal cells are distinctively tree-like cells that make up 80 percent of the neurons in the neocortex, and like antennas, collect information from other neurons in the brain. Basically, they are the redwoods of the brain forest. They are excitatory, sending waves of electrical activity through the network, as people perceive, act, and feel.

[. . .]

Blue Brain has pioneered the use of algebraic topology to tackle a wide range of neuroscience problems, and with this study, has once again demonstrated its effectiveness. In collaboration with Professors Kathryn Hess at EPFL and Ran Levi from the University of Aberdeen, Blue Brain developed an algorithm for objectively classifying 17 types of pyramidal cells in the rat somatosensory cortex.

The topological classification, which uses a new subfield of algebraic topology called topological data analysis, does not require expert input, and is proven to be robust.

[Continues . . .]
"Religion is fundamentally opposed to everything I hold in veneration — courage, clear thinking, honesty, fairness, and above all, love of the truth."
— H. L. Mencken


xSilverPhinx

  • Non Dvcor
  • Administrator
  • Luxembourg Trembles!
  • *****
  • Posts: 16019
  • Gender: Female
  • I Spy With My Googly Eyes...
Re: All things brain...
« Reply #147 on: March 26, 2019, 04:46:33 PM »
^ :popcorn:
Give no mercy to your fear.