Brain Capacity?

William Bains william at
Sun Mar 16 06:18:27 EST 1997

In article <5g37ee$2c5 at oravannahka.Helsinki.FI>, Dag Stenberg
<stenberg at cc.Helsinki.FI> wrote:

> Kevin Spencer <kspencer at> wrote:
> > ak057 at (Shane Markle) writes:
> > >I recently heard of a calculation of the general amount of information 
> > >stored in a human brain, represented in bits, and need to know what that 
> > >capacity is.  ...
> > Whatever this number turns out to be, I wouldn't put any faith in it.
> > The brain isn't a computer based on binary logic.  It certainly doesn't
> > store information as bits.
> I applaud Kevin's comment. 

The more interesting question is ... why do you want to know? Is it to
verify some idea about how the brain works? In which case you want an
experimentally determined number. Is it to understand a theory of how
memory is stored? In which case you want the theory, and the number is a
minor aspect. Is it to chat up women at cocktail parties, in which case
any big number will do, but what you really want is a better chat-up line.

> ------------------------------------------------------------------
> Dag Stenberg     MD PhD                    stenberg at
> Institute of Biomedicine                   tel: int.+358-9-1918532
> Department of Physiology                   fax: int.+358-9-1918681
> P.O.Box 9        (Siltavuorenpenger 20 J)   
> FIN-00014 University of Helsinki,Finland   
> ------------------------------------------------------------------

William Bains

More information about the Neur-sci mailing list