question: job of a neuron

Michael Edelman mje at spamcop.net
Thu Sep 6 08:39:09 EST 2001


Robert Gurk wrote:
> 
> Lars wrote:
> 
... I am Robert, my friends call me Bob,
> though. And now that I gave this intimate fact to the public:
> I still can't see how anything could process perception. OTOH,
> obviously I can process my perceptions and cognitions, and our
> best guess is that I use neurons to do that.
> Still, I don't think that perception/cognition are concepts that
> still hold, if you are on the level of the neuron.

Look at "A History of the Mind", by Nicholas Humpherey, for one
plausible story on perception and self. 

At the level of the individual neuron nothing terribly interesting is
happening as regards meaning, perception and so forth. You won't find
content stored or represented in a neuron.

There are parallels. How does one person's behavior explain economies?
It doesn't. It is how many people interact, trading goods, information
and so forth that creates economies. How does the behavior of a single
hydrogen atom explain cosmology? Same story. And so it is with neurons. 

-- mike
---------------------------------------------------------------
Michael Edelman   mje at spamcop.net
http://www.foldingkayaks.org (nomadics)
http://www.findascope.com (choosing a telescope)




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