Neuro, AI, Robotics seminar Mon.27.jul.1998

F. Frank LeFever flefever at
Thu Jul 30 22:56:00 EST 1998

In <35BFF1CB.A2B77C60 at> Stephen Wood
<swood at> writes: 
>Mentifex wrote:
>>   The "ganged fibres" are simply redundant parallel nerve fibers
>>   holding a concept--which is in turn a collection of associative
>>   tags--which are neuronal fibers leading from the abstract con-
>>   ceptual fibers to the concrete engrams in the sensory channels.
>OK, lets get serious. Published journal articles please (rather than
>non-reviewed web sites) to show the neural basis (and I mean in terms
>neurons, synapses and neurotransmitters) of 'redundant parallel nerve
>holding a concept'. I mean, what is your proof of any of this? Are
>conceptual fibres pyramidal cells? Granule cells? Interneurons? Basket
>Purkinje cells? What? And by the way, I'm uncertain of your use of
>since you seem to be suggesting that actually they aren't redundant
but very

------Never thought I'd find myself defending Mentifex, but evidently
------you endorse the vulgar "definition" of "redundant".  Redundancy n
------in the nervous system is considered useful.  Redundancy in
------communication is considered useful.  Needless to say, people
------drawing these conclusions are considering the implications of the
------correct definition.

>>   Concepts above are "deep" in the Chomskyan sense that they under-
>>   lie, at the profoundest level, the linguistic generation of ideas.
>>   When a thought forms as the dynamic interaction of the "deep" con-
>>   cepts, activity bubbles upwards through the "shallow" lexical
>>   concepts, where rigid structures of Chomskyan syntax fetch words
>>   and morphemes stored in auditory memory to create a new sentence.
>>   The auditory system then consciously hears itself think that idea.
>Again, prove it. There's a number of suggestions that people don't
think in
>language (see Pinker for a start), but in a kind of mentalese. This
>seems to suggest that the auditory system does not hear itself think
an idea
>(for a start the _auditory_ system responds to external sounds, not to
>subvocal speech - have a look through some functional imaging

-------Yes; and there are some striking dissociations of meaning and
-------phonology ins some conditions (especially some strokes).

>>   Dr. LeFever, sometimes History taps a man on the shoulder and he
>>   must choose to take advantage of that tide in the affairs of men
>>   which leads on to fortune.  Please consider such options as wear-
>>   ing to your meetings a nametag or button:  "Ask me about
>>   Be either the great debunker of Mentifex or the great Dr. LeFever.
>  Or be both! Or alternatively, give up on Mentifex and get on with
>serious research

--------I probably do spend too much time on the newsgroup (my bedtime
--------relaxation).  I do present my research fairly regularly to
--------International Neuropsychological Society and to Society for
--------Neuroscience (occasionally to National Academy of
--------Neuropsychology, Academy of Neurology, others), but whether
--------you'd consider it "serious", I don't know.  What do you
--------consider serious?

--------Sincerely, Buffy the Vampire Slayer--aka Great Dr. LeFever.

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