Saturday, August 18, 2007

About the brain

At Discover magazine, 10 Unsolved Mysteries Of The Brain

Of all the objects in the universe, the human brain is the most complex: There are as many neurons in the brain as there are stars in the Milky Way galaxy. So it is no surprise that, ­despite the glow from recent advances in the science of the brain and mind, we still find ourselves squinting in the dark somewhat. But we are at least beginning to grasp the crucial mysteries of neuroscience and starting to make headway in addressing them. Even partial answers to these 10 questions could restructure our understanding of the roughly three-pound mass of gray and white matter that defines who we are.
Physics had its Newton, quantum mechanic its Einstein, biology its Darwin, and genetics its Crick, Watson, and Franklin but neuroscience has yet to have such a tipping point style revolution. Click the link to check ten of the most pressing question in cognitive science.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I would add one more to this list about the brain. Does the unconscious exist, and if so, what is it? Sartre had some interesting questions about the unconscious. The unconscious, in psychoanalytic terms, can be thought of as a censor that knows what we - our regular consciousness - should be exposed to and what it should be shielded from. So for example Sartre asks:

“In a word, how could the censor discern the impulses needing to be repressed without being conscious of discerning them? How can we conceive of a knowledge which is ignorant of itself?“ (from his Existentialism lecture)

I’m not convinced that Sartre’s right in this criticism, but I thought it was thought-provoking.