By Michael L. Anderson
The computing device analogy of the brain has been as commonly followed in modern cognitive neuroscience as was once the analogy of the mind as a suite of organs in phrenology. simply because the phrenologist could insist that every organ needs to have its specific functionality, so modern cognitive neuroscience is dedicated to the idea that every mind sector should have its primary computation. In After Phrenology, Michael Anderson argues that to accomplish a completely post-phrenological technology of the mind, we have to think again this dedication and devise another, neuroscientifically grounded taxonomy of psychological functionality.
Anderson contends that the cognitive roles performed via each one area of the mind are hugely a variety of, reflecting diversified neural partnerships verified less than various conditions. He proposes quantifying the practical homes of neural assemblies when it comes to their dispositional developments quite than their computational or information-processing operations. Exploring larger-scale matters, and drawing on facts from embodied cognition, Anderson develops an image of considering rooted within the exploitation and extension of our early-evolving means for iterated interplay with the area. He argues that the multidimensional method of the mind he describes bargains a stronger healthy for those findings, and a extra promising highway towards a unified technology of minded organisms.
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Additional resources for After phrenology : neural reuse and the interactive brain
3 The functional partners of the left precentral gyrus under three different task conditions. 14 Chapter 1 the diagram, both task domains use the same nodes, and these nodes communicate/cooperate with the same partners. Finally, if the brain developed by reusing individual neural structures for diverse purposes, then we should see high node overlap (because brain regions are used in both tasks) but low edge overlap (because they cooperate with different partners in each). 07). Of course, one might worry that this result is simply an artifact of the fact that in networks there are many more possible edges than nodes, so one would expect to get this result just by chance.
Yet as I noted in that earlier work and wish to emphasize here, the evidence is equally compatible with a weaker (and thus an even less architecturally and functionally conservative) claim: local neural structures have a functional bias, a set of dispositional tendencies that capture the set of inputs to which the circuit will respond and govern the form of the resulting output. This notion is sufficient to account for the observations that local structures have multiple but limited uses without committing one to 16 Chapter 1 the idea that each circuit does exactly one specific thing.
2004). The ensuing debates over the “real” function of these areas have still not been resolved, and in light of these results researchers have started to question the boundaries between psychological domains once thought separate and distinct, such as perception and cognition (Anderson, Richardson, & Chemero 2012; Barsalou 1999, 2008) and cognition and emotion (Pessoa 2008, 2012). This is just a short list of some highly studied regions for which the prospect of a clear-cut mapping of function to structure appears dim.