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Hydrogel Process Creates Transparent Brain For Research

m-kirkcaldie Re:It is a brain dead application. (46 comments)

Ah, no, fMRI doesn't give "movies of activity". As Anthony mentioned it tracks blood flow changes and give you a map of where it changed most when the subject performed a task. Nothing moves in the image. Nor does this technique leave cells intact, and nor can you use electric currents to "study the connectivity". You may want to check up on some basics.

about 2 years ago

Artificial Brain '10 Years Away'

m-kirkcaldie Re:don't believe it (539 comments)

Absolutely right. That kind of finite-element simulation is futile because it simply "enacts" stuff that we know about. Sure, it might behave in ways we didn't foresee when we scale it up a billionfold, but it won't show us anything genuinely new. I suspect there is stuff going on in neurons that we don't even know how to look for. Well actually I *know* there is, because neurons are conscious. Aside from these philosophical objections, Markram's model doesn't even include glia, which are fully half of the interactional dynamics going on in the brain. We scarcely even know what glia are doing, and yet they are part of every synapse and their slow waves of activity strongly shape neuronal processing.

more than 5 years ago

Alaskan Blob Is an Algae Bloom

m-kirkcaldie Re:Timescape (130 comments)

Yes, I did! I'm not working on tachyons, just studying nuclear resonance in indium antimonide. Hang on, something's gone funny with the rig, gotta go.

more than 5 years ago

Scientists Wonder What Fingerprints Are For

m-kirkcaldie They enhance touch perception - known for 50 years (347 comments)

I can't believe it when I see articles debating the purpose of fingerprints. They are mechanical amplifiers for vibration in the skin, thus enhancing touch perception; it's been known for 50-70 years that the ridges form a specific arrangement with the sensory fibre endings. In fact the ridges are CREATED by interactions between the developing skin and the nerve fibres which innervate it to provide touch sensation - this is why some nervous system defects result in abnormal fingerprints (e.g. Down syndrome). The only "Scientists [who] Wonder What Fingerprints Are For" are those unaware of the basic literature in the field. Here's a starting point: http://stke.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/abstract/sci;323/5920/1503 Hope that helps.

more than 5 years ago

DoE-Sponsored Project Readies Human Trial For Artificial Retinas

m-kirkcaldie Re:Retinitis Pigmentosa (82 comments)

Thanks for the info - I hope it doesn't turn out to be RP in your case, but if it does, I hope the prostheses are ready soon.

more than 6 years ago


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