Unlocking the Brain, Volume 1: Coding by Georg Northoff

By Georg Northoff

Neuroscience has made enormous growth in knowing how the mind works. we all know a lot concerning the molecular-genetic and biochemical underpinnings of sensory and motor services, and up to date neuroimaging paintings has opened the door to investigating the neural underpinnings of higher-order cognitive capabilities, comparable to reminiscence, cognizance, or even loose will. In some of these investigations, researchers practice particular stimuli to urge neural job within the mind and search for the functionality in query. notwithstanding, there's extra to the mind and its neuronal states than the alterations in task we result in by means of utilising specific exterior stimuli.

In quantity 1 of Unlocking the Brain, Georg Northoff offers his argument for the way the mind needs to code the connection among its resting country task and stimulus-induced task with the intention to let and predispose psychological states and attention. by way of presupposing this kind of easy experience of neural code, the writer ventures into various territories and fields of present neuroscience, together with a finished exploration of the beneficial properties of resting country task as distinguishable from and stimulus-induced task; sparse coding and predictive coding; and spatial and temporal gains of the resting nation itself. This yields a special and novel photo of the mind, and should have a big and lasting impression on neuroscientists operating in neuroscience, psychiatry, and comparable fields.

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The analogy goes even further. The two merchants meet on a common ground, the market place, to trade their goods. What is the common ground, the “market place,” in the case of the encounter between intrinsic activity and extrinsic stimuli? Very simply, it is the brain itself where the encounter between intrinsic activity and extrinsic stimuli takes place. This, however, is the point where the commonalities end and the differences start. ” This is possible, though, only because intrinsic activity and extrinsic stimuli share a “common currency,” something our poor merchants are lacking.

Species. Taken together, I demonstrate empirical evidence for the close linkage of sparse coding to difference-based coding in both spatial and temporal terms on a single-neuron and population level of neural activity. Key Concepts and Topics Covered Coding strategies of sensory input, sparse coding, local coding, dense coding, single neuron and population level, non-linearity, biophysical-computational features of neurons, schizophrenia, different species NEUROEMPIRICAL BACKGROUND IA: ENCODING OF STIMULI IN TERMS OF SPARSE CODING We are bombarded with a multitude of inputs from the environment: for instance, sensory stimuli, such as various forms of light intensity and changes in sound pressure; gustatory and olfactory stimuli; and so on.

Neuroscience may here want to learn its lesson from, for example, physics and biology, where experimental discoveries and theoretical-conceptual reflections went hand in hand. To give the reader some signposts in each chapter, I indicate by the title what each section is about. ” This and the respective section titles serve to orient the reader to what each section is about. Moreover, each chapter starts with a summary and the key concepts and topics, while it ends with a section that addresses open questions.

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