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Software vs. Wetware

Philippe Lebrun plebrun at minf.vub.ac.be
Wed Jun 21 06:23:33 EST 1995


In article <khurley.803704818 at quapaw.astate.edu>, khurley at quapaw.astate.edu (Kevin E. Hurley) writes:
|>    It has recently been brought to my attention that modeling neural
|> activity through software simulation(Neural Networks) may serve a vantage that
|> "traditional"(wet experiments) neuroscience may be overlooking. 
|>    I am in the process of compiling some public domain software to test
|> these accusations for myself. Yet I wonder how the scientific community
|> in "traditional neuroscience" may reguard biological software simulation. At
|> the risk of provoking response due to controversy, I am under the impression 
|> that "wet" experiments may yield sensitive/accurate data while software
|> simulation will produce precise data exceeding that of any "wet"
|> experiment. This precise definition yielded from simulation will push our
|> theory, and is therefore useful and necessary but maybe not sufficient.

	In order to program a good simulation, you have to be able to
model all the component parts. And most biological systems are extraordinarily 
complex. 
	By definition, those of us doing research are (re)searching for 
something yet unknown. 
	Simulations may be useful for inferring the higher order behavior
of systems whose components are known, but this excludes all of my work and
probably most other peoples' as well.

Philippe
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http://minf.vub.ac.be/~plebrun/



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