Showing 86 posts tagged brain
After publishing an especially challenging quantum mechanics article, it’s not uncommon to hear some of our readers complain that their head hurts. Presumably, they mean that the article gave them a (metaphoric) headache. But it’s actually possible that challenging your brain does a bit of physical damage to the nerve cells of the brain. Researchers are reporting that, following situations where the brain is active, you might find signs of DNA damage within the cells there. The damage is normally restored quickly, but they hypothesize that the inability to repair it quickly enough may underlie some neurological diseases.
» via ars technica
It’s been fashionable in military circles to talk about cyberspace as a “fifth domain” for warfare, along with land, space, air and sea. But there’s a sixth and arguably more important warfighting domain emerging: the human brain.
This new battlespace is not just about influencing hearts and minds with people seeking information. It’s about involuntarily penetrating, shaping, and coercing the mind in the ultimate realization of Clausewitz’s definition of war: compelling an adversary to submit to one’s will. And the most powerful tool in this war is brain-computer interface (BCI) technologies, which connect the human brain to devices.
Current BCI work ranges from researchers compiling and interfacing neural data such as in the Human Conectome Project to work by scientists hardening the human brain against rubber hose cryptanalysis to technologists connecting the brain to robotic systems. While these groups are streamlining the BCI for either security or humanitarian purposes, the reality is that misapplication of such research and technology has significant implications for the future of warfare.
» via Wired
When people make hasty decisions, they tend to make more mistakes. Now, a new study on monkeys explains why: Brain cells become hypersensitive to new information, even bad information, making us likelier to draw faulty conclusions.
“When we try to do things too quickly, we tend to make more errors and then when we slow down we tend to be more accurate,” said study co-author Richard Heitz, a neuroscientist at Vanderbilt University. “Your brain sees things differently when you’re placed into a situation where you have to make snap decisions.”
» via Yahoo! News
Good news for all those who ever had a teacher or a parent say “If you would just apply yourself you could learn anything! You’re only using 10 percent of your brain!”
All those people were wrong. If we did use only 10 percent of our brains we’d be close to dead, according to Eric Chudler, director of the Center for Sensorimotor Neural Engineering at the University of Washington, who maintains an entertaining brain science website for kids. “When recordings are made from brain EEGs, or PET scans, or any type of brain scan, there’s no part of the brain just sitting there unused,” he said.
» via MSNBC