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Basic Neuron Questions

John H. johnh at faraway.xxx
Thu Apr 10 01:16:18 EST 2003


Just for once, could someone say, "it's really quite straightforward." I
wonder how often lecturers in neuro related jazz feel threatened by their
students ... .


John H.


"Didier A. Depireux" <didier at rai.isr.umd.edu> wrote in message
news:b717sa$s6b$1 at grapevine.wam.umd.edu...
> John H. <johnh at faraway.xxx> wrote:
> > At what time scale does the nervous system operate?
>
> Well,  that's still an open question isn't it? There are 2 schools of
> thought (grossly oversimplifying), one that says timing is exquisitely
> important, and the relative timing of 2 spikes might encode information
down
> to the 100 microsecond range, and the other that says that only the
average
> firing rate, averaged over a certain time window and over neighboring
> spikes, is what matters.
> If you look at the book "Spikes" by Bialek and others, they take the
> position that it's half-way between the time code and the rate code, i.e.
> you have about 1 spike per relevant time-scale. Say you listen to speech,
> and extract the spectral envelope which changes (phonemic rate) _about_
every
> 30 msec. If the primary auditory cortical neurons are the ones in charge
of
> extracting spectral envelope, you will find as a correlate that primary
> auditory neurons fires at about a rate of 30 Hz...
>
> So the answer, as ever, is "it depends".
>
> For timing issues, look at the paper on
> http://homepage.mac.com/cariani/CarianiWebsite/Publications.html
> called "As if time really mattered"
>
>
> Didier
>
> --
> Didier A Depireux         ddepi001 at umaryland.edu  didier at isr.umd.edu
> 685 W.Baltimore Str      http://neurobiology.umaryland.edu/depireux.htm
> Anatomy and Neurobiology                      Phone: 410-706-1272 (off)
> University of Maryland                                      -1273 (lab)
> Baltimore MD 21201 USA                             Fax: 1-410-706-2512





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