An added point and a question.
The added point: the continuous unconscious operation of the processing
modules for attention appears to be supported by the mechanism of
'alerting.' Even though we are not conscious of monitoring the visual
scene for novelty, a major change or event will trigger orientation to it.
This would not be possible if attention involved post-processing.
The question: attention appears to be controlled by the prefrontal cortex.
How (the hell!) does it switch between the multiple modes that have been
identified (attention to novelty, attention to lack of novelty,
known-object search, auditory-cued search, and probably others). Has
anyone been looking at how a neural network could control this switching?
It's probably a mechanism similar to that by which the motor cortex
controls the inferior olive/cerebellum, but that gains us little insight.
Internet: herwin at gmu.edu or erwin at trwacs.fp.trw.com
Working on Katchalsky networks....