Suppose neuroscientists map the billions of neural circuits in the human brain….are we any closer to cracking the great existential mysteries - like meaning, purpose or happiness? Scientists, contemplatives and religious thinkers are now exploring the connections between neuroscience and contemplative practice, and creating a new science of mindfulness.
Tagged with “memory” (12)
“What a drag it is getting old,” sang the Rolling Stones, back in the day. Oliver Sacks begs to differ.
The best-selling neurologist-author turned 80 last week. And he’s loving it. More leisure. More freedom. Freedom of time. Freedom of mind, heart, soul.
He can’t lift 600 pounds anymore, the way he did as a young body-builder in California. And he knows death comes closer, of course. But old age has not turned out grim for this famed thinker and writer. It’s fun.
This hour, On Point: Oliver Sacks on the joy of old age.
Douglas Coupland and William Gibson discuss culture, technology, and the craft of writing. Communications technologies are a global memory prosthesis, says Gibson, and aspire to an experience in which distinctions between the "virtual" and the "real" are dissolved. We are already the borg, Gibson says.
Aleks Krotoski explores when captivates and beguiles and asks if the digital world can measure up to the real one.
Our brains are filled with billions of neurons. Neuroscientist Sebastian Seung explains how mapping out the connections between those neurons might be the key to understanding the basis of things like personality, memory, perception, ideas and mental illness.
ZZ Packer reads Stuart Dybek’s "Paper Lantern," and discusses it with The New Yorker’s fiction editor, Deborah Treisman. "Paper Lantern" was published in the November 27, 1995, issue of The New Yorker, and was reprinted in "The Best American Short Stories 1996." ZZ Packer is the author of the short-story collection "Drinking Coffee Elsewhere."
In case you don’t read The Journal of Neural Engineering, here’s the news: scientists have created a brain implant that restores lost memory function and strengthens recall.
A brain implant. Now, it was in a rat. But it’s proven what can be done.
And offered a glimpse of what’s coming for humans. There is lots of talk about the “bionic brain.” To repair injuries, like Gabby Giffords’.
To supplement brains like yours and mine. Check out this headline: “Intel Wants Brain Implants in Customers Heads by 2020.”
It’s exciting, and it’s scary.
The march of computer technology continues. But as silicon chips and search engines become faster and more productive – can the same be said for us?
The creator of Wolfram Alpha describes how his new “computational knowledge engine” is changing – and improving – how we process information. Meanwhile, suffering from data and distraction burnout? Find out what extremes some folks take to stop their search engines.
Also, the Singularity sensation of humans merging with machines… and, why for the ancient Greeks all of this is “been there, done that.” A deep sea dive turns up a 2,000 year old computer!
Jo Marchant – Freelance science journalist and author of Decoding the Heavens: A 2,000-Year-Old Computer—and the Century-Long Search to Discover Its Secrets - Stephen Wolfram – Mathematican, computer programmer, and founder of Wolfram Research and Wolfram Alpha - Fred Stutzman – PhD student at the University of North Carolina School of Information and Library Science - Peggy Orenstein – author and contributing editor to the New York Times Magazine, which is where we found her article “Stop Your Search Engines” - Ray Kurzweil – Inventor, futurist and author, most recently, of The Singularity Is Near: When Humans
Viktor Mayer-Schönberger, associate professor and director of the Information and Innovation Policy Research Center at National University of Singapore’s Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy discusses his new book Delete: The Virtue of Forgetting in the Digital Age.
What’s in a memory? An original in the field of memory research, Endel Tulving shares his insights. Mental time-travel through what he terms "episodic memory" may have been one of "the drivers of the evolution of culture". A free-wheeling conversation with Marilyn Powell about memory and the mind.
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