Brain as Parallel Processor
Professor Earl Miller explain that the brain, unlike a computer, processes information in a parallel manner. This makes for quick identification of objects.
It is very fast - you can identify an object within a few tenths of milliseconds. So what that means is that the brain is operating in a lot of different functions in parallel, that's the way the brain can solve problems very rapidly. Unlike a computer, which has a very limited ability to recognize objects - they are much slower than the brain because computers do things in a serial fashion: first task A is completed, then task B, and then task C and eventually you get the answer. And that's one of the major differences between the computer and a brain is that a brain does lots of things in parallel so we can come up with an answer quickly. And again it is important that we have quick answers because when something is jumping out of the bushes at us we have to know whether its friend or foe pretty quickly.
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Professor Earl Miller explains that that the term 'plasticity' is used by neuroscientists to refer to the fact that the brain changes as a result of experience.
Professor Earl Miller discusses the importance of the brain's ability to categorize objects.
Professor Earl Miller explains that the visual cortex, inferior temporal cortex, and prefrontal cortex perform distinct functions in object identification.
A overview of perception-related content on Genes to Cognition Online.
Networks are the engines that drive our brain, they exist at every level of organization. Genes, proteins, and neurons all form highly integrated complex networks.
Professor Earl Miller describes research that shows objects are recognized using higher brain regions, specifically the prefrontal cortex.
Professor Earl Miller discusses the hypothesis that an entire network of neurons are required to perceptually identify a single object.
Professor Graham Collingridge describes the process of long-term potentiation (LTP) - the process by which synapses increase their efficiency.
Professor Earl Miller explains that neurons in the prefrontal cortex respond to recognize very specific categories of object such as 'dog' or 'cat'.
Only quite recently have neuroscientists begun to understand the importance of white matter, a long-neglected part of the brain.