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Wilder Penfield

Wilder Penfield, Neural Cartographer.
posted by homunculus on Aug 28, 2008 - 14 comments

The Limits of fMRI

Picturing our thoughts. "We're looking for too much in brain scans." [Via]
posted by homunculus on Aug 19, 2008 - 16 comments

Hearts and Minds

The US military has been putting more attention into brain science research, covering such potential applications as mind reading, mind control, cognitive enhancement and brain-machine interfaces. This is detailed in the report "Emerging Cognitive Neuroscience and Related Technologies" (also available in an abridged PDF version), authored by a National Research Council committee convened by the Department of Defense.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing on Aug 18, 2008 - 28 comments

Dopamine

A New State of Mind. "New research is linking dopamine to complex social phenomena and changing neuroscience in the process."
posted by homunculus on Aug 12, 2008 - 25 comments

I sense you want to plead the 5th

For the first time in the Indian state of Maharashtra, life sentences were meted out based on the findings of Brain Electrical Oscillation Signature(BEOS) profiling. [more inside]
posted by Gyan on Jul 21, 2008 - 53 comments

Journey to the center of the brain

Mapping the Structural Core of Human Cerebral Cortex. A new study of the connections in the brain has identified the brain's central hub.
posted by homunculus on Jul 4, 2008 - 14 comments

MetaCognition

You know the feeling that something is on the tip of your tongue? It offers deep insights into the nature of the mind. [Via The Frontal Cortex]
posted by homunculus on Jun 3, 2008 - 24 comments

MettaFilter

"Attention regulation and monitoring in meditation" (PDF). A recent article in Trends in Cognitive Sciences on the neuroscience of meditation, focusing on how meditation alters and sharpens the brain's attention systems. The research is being done at the Waisman Laboratory for Brain Imaging and Behavior (previously), who have also recently published research on the "Regulation of the neural circuitry of emotion by compassion meditation" (PDF), which describes how meditation can cultivate compassion by physically affecting brain regions that play a role in empathy. They shared this research with the Dalai Lama at the recent Seeds of Compassion forum.
posted by homunculus on Apr 27, 2008 - 13 comments

Coming of Age on Antidepressants

Who Are We? Coming of Age on Antidepressants. [Via Mind Hacks.] [more inside]
posted by homunculus on Apr 16, 2008 - 49 comments

Door Game

The predictably irrational door game. [more inside]
posted by Rumple on Feb 22, 2008 - 39 comments

Literacy & Thought

Twilight of the Books - What will life be like if people stop reading? [more inside]
posted by Gyan on Dec 18, 2007 - 88 comments

The Zen Mind

The Zen Mind - An Introduction. A Day in the Life of a Zen Monk. Zazen - A Guide to Sitting. Interview with a Zen Buddhist Priest (previously). [more inside]
posted by homunculus on Dec 8, 2007 - 36 comments

Nicod Lectures

Since 1993, the Institut Jean Nicod has awarded the annual Jean Nicod Prize to a leading philosopher or cognitive scientist for his or her work in the interdisciplinary study of the mind. The recipient is expected to deliver a series of lectures. The lecture series of this past year's winner, philosopher Stephen Stich, is entitled "Moral Theory Meets Cognitive Science: How Cognitive Science Can Transform Traditional Debates", and is now available online in video form. Also available is the lecture series of the previous year's winner, evolutionary anthropologist Michael Tomasello: "Origins of Human Communication". [more inside]
posted by painquale on Oct 29, 2007 - 2 comments

To Read or Not to Read

MindPapers - David Chalmers organizes, streamlines and expands his collection of papers related to mind and neuroscience.
posted by Gyan on Oct 25, 2007 - 32 comments

Memory and Sleep

Mapping Memory. "Turn the human brain upside down and all around to see how memories are saved (or lost)." National Geographic has a great interactive 3D map of the brain as part of an excellent feature on memory. [more inside]
posted by homunculus on Oct 24, 2007 - 5 comments

Philosophy and Neuroscience

The Philosophy and Neuroscience Movement (PDF). A paper by Andrew Brook and Pete Mandik on the relationship between neuroscience and philosophy. [Via MindHacks.] [more inside]
posted by homunculus on Oct 5, 2007 - 15 comments

The Case Against Adolescence

"Imagine what it would feel like—or think back to what it felt like—when your body and mind are telling you you're an adult while the adults around you keep insisting you're a child." An interview with psychologist Robert Epstein, who argues that American teens are far more intelligent, capable, and moral than we give them credit for. His new book, The Case Against Adolescence, suggests that infantilization of teens leads to psychological problems. See also Epstein's article "The Myth of the Teen Brain" [PDF] from Scientific American Mind.
posted by 912 Greens on Sep 19, 2007 - 61 comments

Video Ergo Sum

Virtual Out-of-Body Experience. Using two procedures to deliberately scramble a person's visual and tactile senses, neuroscientists are able to induce "out-of-body" experiences in people. The effect is the same as the 'rubber hand illusion', but extends the effect to the whole body instead of just one limb (you can try the hand illusion for yourself).
posted by homunculus on Aug 24, 2007 - 11 comments

"...it's only when you have your code in your head that you really understand the problem."

Ever read a blog post, and think, "I wish I wrote that"? For all the Mefites with the many AskMe questions about "can I/should I/how should I learn to/ be a computer programmer", here's a pretty good explication of how good programing is done: Holding a Program in One's Head.
posted by orthogonality on Aug 24, 2007 - 43 comments

I smell a rat|dog|cat|mouse

Do You Taste What I Taste? - The first of Slate's 3-part series on the physiology of taste [parts 2, 3]
posted by Gyan on Jul 15, 2007 - 13 comments

Metafilter has a front page. This is a post. Post is on the front page. Post is about language.

Recursion and Human Thought - Why the Piraha don't have numbers
posted by Gyan on Jun 13, 2007 - 47 comments

Victim of The Brain

Victim of the Brain A 'docudrama' about Godel, Escher and Bach author, Douglas Hofstadter, and philosopher Dan Dennett produced in 1988. I'm not sure how to describe it, other than incredibly strange and fascinating.
posted by empath on Apr 11, 2007 - 19 comments

My Brain Made Me

Neurolaw - The Brain on the Stand
posted by Gyan on Mar 11, 2007 - 8 comments

The Art of Psychiatry

Dictionary of Disorder - shaping the DSM
posted by Gyan on Jan 13, 2007 - 13 comments

Nullity and Perspex Machines

Dr James Anderson, from the University of Reading's computer science department, claims to have defined what it means to divide by zero. It's so simple, he claims, that he's even taught it to high school students [via Digg]. You just have to work with a new number he calls Nullity (RealPlayer video). According to Anderson's site The Book of Paragon, the creation, innovation, or discovery of nullity is a step toward describing a "perspective simplex, or perspex [ . . . ] a simple physical thing that is both a mind and a body." Anderson claims that Nullity permits the definition of transreal arithmetic (pdf), a "total arithmetic . . . with no arithmetical exceptions," thus removing what the fictional dialogue No Zombies, Only Feelies? identifies as the "homunculus problem" in mathematics: the need for human intervention to sort out "corner cases" which are not defined.
posted by treepour on Dec 7, 2006 - 63 comments

Metafilter of the brain

Neuroscience Gateway - "a comprehensive source for the latest research, news and events in neuroscience and genomics research"
posted by Gyan on Oct 2, 2006 - 6 comments

Is Medicalization Aversion Disorder a real disease?

Psychiatry by Prescription - Do psychotropic drugs blur the boundaries between illness and health?
posted by Gyan on Aug 26, 2006 - 39 comments

Hemispherectomy

Living with half a brain - hemispherectomy, probably the most radical procedure in neurosurgery
posted by Gyan on Jun 29, 2006 - 50 comments

Would the Algorithm of Fugue end with A B C?

Douglas Hofstadter says, "What troubles me is the notion that things that touch me at my deepest core -- pieces of music most of all, which I have always taken as direct soul-to-soul messages -- might be effectively produced by mechanisms thousands if not millions of times simpler than the intricate biological machinery that gives rise to a human soul.". That was prompted by his reception to the output of David Cope's project Experiments in Musical Intelligence.
posted by Gyan on Apr 11, 2006 - 22 comments

Best of the logical web

Fallacy Files
posted by Gyan on Feb 11, 2006 - 16 comments

Safe mutilation

Some British nurses want patients who are intent on harming themselves to be provided with clean blades so that they can cut themselves more safely.
posted by daksya on Feb 5, 2006 - 51 comments

I'm blue, da boo dee, da boo die...

Blue Gene bears Blue Brain beats Deep Blue. Dr. Henry Markram answers questions in the FAQ. Neurons are beautiful. Blue Gene/L is now the fastest supercomputer in the world. IBM Research rocks. Deep Blue beat Kasparov almost a decade ago. Feeling Blue?
posted by reflection on Jan 29, 2006 - 10 comments

The concept of the Transhuman: human, the self, consciousness and their effects on the law

The first Transhuman Conference On the Law of Transhuman Persons: Whether or not you believe humans are set to evolve into gods, or AI is destined to achieve self-awareness the idea of the Transhuman is a thought provoking concept. Philosophers have debated the nature of the self, of the human for millennia. Is it time to start drafting new laws to govern all possible sentient beings on this planet? or is it all just a science of fiction? a comfortable humanist illusion?
posted by 0bvious on Dec 13, 2005 - 37 comments

This so called reality

If the universe is a hologram and the healthy human brain a valve of consciousness then where'd this mental infinity come from? Are we simply living the simulacrum? Or does Pi protect us all, forever, infinitely?
posted by 0bvious on Nov 22, 2005 - 39 comments

Seductive Solutions for Rough Illnesses

Serotonin and Depression: A Disconnect between the Advertisements and the Scientific Literature
posted by daksya on Nov 8, 2005 - 60 comments

Science of Sleep

Nature has a somewhat technical but free supplement on sleep
posted by Gyan on Oct 29, 2005 - 19 comments

Classic texts in psychology

Classics in the History of Psychology
posted by Gyan on Sep 26, 2005 - 3 comments

"My mind is my own church." ~ Thomas Paine

Mind Reading.
posted by Citizen Premier on Aug 7, 2005 - 14 comments

Psychoactive Drugs for the Future

Psychoactive Drugs for the Future Could brain-boosting drugs become as common as coffee?
UK government group Foresight have just released their 'Brain Science, Addiction and Drugs Project' in which the aim was to evaluate:
"How can we manage the use of psychoactive substances in the future to best advantage for the individual, the community and society?"
The report can be viewed in its entirety from here. Direct link to the Executive Summary (.pdf) via
posted by peacay on Jul 15, 2005 - 31 comments

Ramachandran for brain enthusiasts

Phantom limb illusions Dr. Ramachandran is an investigator of the senses. His explorations on synesthesia, phantom limbs, and human consciousness are revealing excursions into sensory awareness. And his reader-friendly books, such as A Brief Tour of Human Consciousness and Phantoms in the Brain (both from Amazon) are a pleasure to read. His greatest gifts appear to be a childlike simplicity, coupled with straightforward empiricism. His writing is easy-to-understand, often sparked with unpredictable humor. Recommended for all mind & brain enthusiasts who may not have heard of him yet.
posted by ember on Jun 3, 2005 - 10 comments

your mind

download your mind Realistically by 2050 we would expect to be able to download your mind into a machine, so when you die it's not a major career problem,' Pearson told The Observer. 'If you're rich enough then by 2050 it's feasible. If you're poor you'll probably have to wait until 2075 or 2080 when it's routine. We are very serious about it. That's how fast this technology is moving
posted by robbyrobs on May 25, 2005 - 81 comments

autistic != empathetic

Could autism be a result of "extreme male" mind? A UK scientist has devised an intriguing theory as to the character and cause of autism. and yeah, this is my first FPP, for those who care about that kind of thing
posted by telstar on Apr 27, 2005 - 52 comments

It's all in the mind.

Neuroeconomics: "Eventually it could help economists design incentives that gently guide people toward making decisions that are in their long-term best interests in everything from labor negotiations to diets to 401(k) plans." Note the ambiguous use of the pronoun "their"--are we talking about the long-term interests of people in general or of economists?
posted by all-seeing eye dog on Mar 22, 2005 - 25 comments

more mind control

"An autopoietic system is one organised to respond to the world. Prod it and it will react homeostatically, striving to reach a new accommodation that preserves its integrity. There is a global cohesion - a memory of what the system wants to be - that reaches down to organise the parts even while those parts may be adding up to produce the functioning whole."
posted by all-seeing eye dog on Mar 17, 2005 - 29 comments

Online papers on consciousness

Online papers on consciousness from androids to zombies, compiled by David Chalmers. Need a primer before you jump into the heavy stuff? See his Guide to the Philosophy of Mind. [via The Curvature of the Earth is Overwhelmed by Local Noise]
posted by DevilsAdvocate on Mar 3, 2005 - 7 comments

Through the Looking Chords

Dr Hugo's Museum of the Mind - Synaesthesia
posted by Gyan on Jan 20, 2005 - 22 comments

The Mind Project

The Mind Project. Delve into the research, including Iris and AI. Browse the curriculum. And, if you're a student or educator, or have Flash/programming skills, you can get involved. (Please note the site is always under development, and the interface is a little wanky - Flash intro.)
posted by tr33hggr on Apr 8, 2004 - 2 comments

Semantic web : Lost in Translation

Clay Shirky smacks syllogism around. Nice criticism of the semantic web and the present (and increasing) hype of the "semantic web revolution". The most damning part of the essay is the part about languages and categories being deeply intertwined with worldview and with culture—if there's no good definition for the word "bachelor" (see), how can there be an encoding of "friend", "lover" (see article for the classic AI example of "John loves Mary") or anything else that isn't zipcode?
posted by zpousman on Nov 8, 2003 - 62 comments

Con-man, the next Einstein, or...?

Rupert Sheldrake, author of several books (The Sense of Being Stared At; Dogs That Know When Their Owners Are Coming Home) that detail evidence for the existence of various extra-sensory perceptions. In a lecture for Microsoft Research [page contains link to a 73 minute streaming ASX file] entitled "The Extended Mind: Recent Experimental Evidence", he attacks the mechanistic view of nature and the materialistic view of the mind, and presents his own theory, which involves fields of Morphic Resonance, formative causation, and what he calls "The Extended Mind". Feel free to dismiss after watching.
posted by goethean on Oct 21, 2003 - 38 comments

Ommm you rough beast, Ommm.....

Buddhism tames the amygdala Covered recently on Metafilter (here), new research at the University of California San Francisco Medical Centre ( into the "Happy Buddhist" phenomenon ) shows that Buddhist meditation techniques "can tame the amygdala, an area of the brain which is the hub of fear memory." [BBC] -Is this the Rx for a nation of Americans gripped by fear? Do Christianity, Islam or Judaism have effective techniques to tame the amygdala too?
posted by troutfishing on May 22, 2003 - 48 comments

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