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Re: [ontolog-forum] brainwaves (WAS: to concept or not to concept, is th

To: paola.dimaio@xxxxxxxxx
Cc: "[ontolog-forum] " <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: Pat Hayes <phayes@xxxxxxx>
Date: Mon, 17 Dec 2007 23:28:35 -0800
Message-id: <p06230931c38d258a40ac@[]>
>On Dec 18, 2007 7:57 AM, Pat Hayes <phayes@xxxxxxx> wrote:
>>  . Even if one were given a complete
>>  (dead) mammalian brain, there is no conceivable
>>  way to reconstruct all the neural connections in
>>  it, since the total cross-section of a neuron's
>>  end branchings greatly exceeds that of its axon,
>>  and these neurons are tightly packed in the
>>  cortex. Any way to 'take it apart' to find all
>>  the neurons, therefore, would of necessity
>>  involve breaking the connections which hold them
>>  together. Put another way: its impossible to
>>  assemble (or disassemble) a brain; it has to be
>>  grown.
>This is precisely why I think the brain should be studied as a whole, and
>not in its puree or minced form.    (01)

Well, everyone agrees with that, of course. The 
problem is knowing how to start describing a 
whole brain. BTW, it is definitely known that 
different parts (areas) of the brain perform 
distinct functions, even though they mostly look 
similar under a microscope.    (02)

>  Thats the only way the neural paths (folk. 'brainwave') can be observed,    (03)

Wait: neural paths aren't waves. Waves are 
rhythmic patterns of activity across the whole 
brain, like movements in a flock of birds. These 
are only a tiny fraction of the total brain 
activity, though, most of which seems to not be 
'waves' at all, more like flashes or bursts.    (04)

>I hate to think like  Frankenstein , but I bet you can induce some
>level of passive activity in a coma  brain by passing some tiny
>frequencies.    (05)

You can stimulate neurons in an awake brain by 
small electrical impulses along a needle. The 
person in the brain experiences some very odd 
stuff, depending on where you do this to.    (06)

>  (not ac/dc I guess)
>I ll have to remember to do that experiment next time I come across a coma    (07)

Well, speaking as an ex-epileptic, I'd rather you didn't.    (08)

Pat :-)    (09)

>Paola Di Maio
>School of IT
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