Do Rats Have Free Will?

By Neuroskeptic | November 12, 2014 12:11 pm

New research on the neural basis of ‘spontaneous’ actions in rats could shed light on the philosophical mystery that is human ‘free will’.

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CATEGORIZED UNDER: animals, EEG, philosophy, select, Top Posts

More Etymological Maps of the Brain

By Neuroskeptic | November 10, 2014 4:58 am

By popular demand, here are some more etymological maps of the brain – images illustrating what the names of the parts of the brain actually mean. If you missed the first one, it’s here.

First off, an axial cross-section: the image is adapted from here. Most of the meanings are from this excellent page.

Axial_Brain_Etymology

And below is a zoomed-in cross section of the ‘little brain’, the cerebellum – the image is adapted from here:

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CATEGORIZED UNDER: science, select, Top Posts

The Inherent Limits of MRI Tractography?

By Neuroskeptic | November 6, 2014 4:39 pm

A popular neuroscience tool, diffusion MRI tractography, may fundamentally have limited accuracy. That’s according to a paper just published in PNAS: Anatomical accuracy of brain connections derived from diffusion MRI tractography is inherently limited

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An Etymological Map of the Brain

By Neuroskeptic | November 1, 2014 2:05 pm

The parts of the brain have many weird and wonderful names. But what do those names signify? I’ve made this Etymological Map of the Brain to illustrate the meaning behind the names of common cerebral structures.

brain_etymology

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CATEGORIZED UNDER: science, select, Top Posts, Uncategorized

Announcing… PLoS Neuroskeptic!

By Neuroskeptic | October 28, 2014 5:50 pm

I’m excited (and proud) to announce that I’m now a Contributing Editor at the new PLoS Neuro Community (neuro.plos.org).

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CATEGORIZED UNDER: blogging, links, Uncategorized

Most Autistic People Have Normal Brain Anatomy

By Neuroskeptic | October 25, 2014 12:54 pm

A new paper threatens to turn the world of autism neuroscience upside down. Its title is Anatomical Abnormalities in Autism?, and it claims that, well, there aren’t very many.

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Power Makes People Deliberate Less Over Emails

By Neuroskeptic | October 19, 2014 6:24 am

napoleon_email

When it comes to emails, power makes people spend less time thinking and more time typing. So say German cyber-psychologists Annika Scholl and Kai Sassenberg in a new paper just published: Experienced Social Power Reduces Deliberation During E-Mail Communication

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CATEGORIZED UNDER: funny, media, papers, select, Top Posts, you

Inherited Memories: Too Good To Be True?

By Neuroskeptic | October 16, 2014 3:18 pm

In December last year, researchers Brian Dias and Kerry Ressler made a splash with a paper seeming to show that memories can be inherited.

This article, published in Nature Neuroscience, reported that if adult mice are taught to be afraid of a particular smell, then their children will also fear it. Which is pretty wild. Epigenetics was proposed as the mechanism.

Now, however, psychologist Gregory Francis says that the data Dias and Ressler published are just too good to be true: Too much success for recent groundbreaking epigenetic experiments.

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Emodiversity: A Mix of Emotions Is Healthiest?

By Neuroskeptic | October 13, 2014 4:17 pm

“Emodiversity” – a life containing a balance of different emotions – is good for you. So say psychologists Jordi Quoidbach and colleagues in a rather cool new paper (pdf).

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What Really Drives Academic Citations?

By Neuroskeptic | October 12, 2014 1:11 pm

Citations are today the international currency of the scholarly economy. In theory, academic citations are the gold standard measure of the ‘impact‘ of a piece of work. If it gets other academics talking then it’s important.

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CATEGORIZED UNDER: FixingScience, media, science, select, Top Posts
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