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Gentlemachines
What's new at the crossroads of culture, technology and science
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Pentagon’s Prosthetic Plan: Tap Spinal Fluid to Fuel Fake Limbs

Pentagon’s Prosthetic Plan: Tap Spinal Fluid to Fuel Fake Limbs | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it

The prostheses of the future will be powered by spinal fluid.

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MIT crowdsources and gamifies brain analysis | ExtremeTech

MIT crowdsources and gamifies brain analysis | ExtremeTech | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it

"MIT wants to change all that by tasking thousands of people with analyzing a 0.3-millimeter slice of mouse retinal tissue. Using a new site called Eyewire, MIT will ask users to track a neuron’s path by coloring in each axon (tendril). In the future, MIT will roll out another “game” which challenges users to find the synapses. The end result will be the connectome (a tome of connections) of the mouse’s retina."


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Crowd-Sourcing Brain Research Leads to Breakthrough

"In the largest collaborative study of the brain to date, scientists using imaging technology at more than 100 centers worldwide have for the first time zeroed in on genes that they agree play a role in intelligence and memory.

Scientists working to understand the biology of brain function — and especially those using brain imaging, a blunt tool — have been badly stalled. But the new work, involving more than 200 scientists, lays out a strategy for breaking the logjam. The findings appear in a series of papers published online Sunday in the journal Nature Genetics.

“What’s really new here is this movement toward crowd-sourcing brain research,” said Paul Thompson, a professor of neurology at the University of California, Los Angeles, and senior author of one of the papers. “This is an example of social networking in science, and it gives us a power we have not had.”"


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Adventures In Behavioral Neurology—or—what Neurology Can Tell Us About Human Nature | Conversation | Edge

Adventures In Behavioral Neurology—or—what Neurology Can Tell Us About Human Nature | Conversation | Edge | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it

Neurology is my kind of frontier: "Even Freud was a behavioral neurologist. We usually think of him as a psychologist, but he was also a neurologist. In fact, he began his career as a neurologist, comparable in stature with Charcot, Hughling Jackson, Kurt Goldstein. What they did was to look at patients with sustained injury to a very small region of the brain—and this is what we do as well in our lab. What you get is not a blunting of all your mental capacities or across the board reduction of your mental ability. What you get often is a highly selective loss of one specific function, other functions being preserved relatively intact. This gives you some confidence in saying that that region of the brain is specialized in dealing with that function."

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