I have misplaced my iPhone. I search for it with my mind’s eye. In thoughts I trace my route through the house. Some people, such as Oliver Sacks, lack a mind’s eye. This is called aphantasia. At the other extreme are people with a super mind’s eye.
Translated by Rumia Bose During the first lockdown in the Netherlands I wrote a blog about Science in the time of Corona. The emphasis lay on explaining the business of science, and that the establishing of facts took time that we did not have. At such moments you have to trust scientists and policy makers who are in charge.We now … Read More
The memory develops after birth. A baby starts by registering how it should move. From around the age of three, a child can register events which form part of its life story, to be recalled in later life. But emotional events such as traumas are possibly registered much earlier as stray facts. These can elicit reactions, although you can’t retell them.
The Corona virus spreads via coughing and sneezing. The way it spreads should be easy to investigate. But that does not turn out to be true. Scientists only know a fraction of what they want to know and have to deliver facts to the authorities in order for them to act swiftly. Our Dutch scientists are top of the bill. Therefore, I have confidence in them.
The probability of having autism is greater for an individual if it runs in their family. This suggests hereditary factors. But what do you actually inherit? What you inherit is a predisposition for a specific development of your brain. This, together with what you experience while growing up, can lead to the development of a mild to severe form of autism.
Is a thought simply the sum total of the activity of all the neurons in the brain? No, just as a message is not simply the placement of a sequence of letters which follow the rules of grammar. How do those letters stand in relation to that message? How does the activity of neurons stand in relation to a thought? Was Descartes right, or are we our brain?