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Brains As Engines of Association: An Operating Principle for Nervous Systems (英語) ハードカバー – 2019/4/29
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Brains as Engines of Association tackles a fundamental question in neuroscience: what is the operating principle of the human brain?
While a similar question has been asked and answered for virtually every other human organ during the last few centuries, how the brain operates has remained a central challenge in biology. Based on evidence derived from vision, audition, speech and music―much of it based on the author's own work over the last twenty years―Brains as Engines of Association argues that brains operate wholly on the basis of trial and error experience, encoded in neural circuitry over evolutionary and individual time.
This concept of neural function runs counter to current concepts that view the brain as a computing machine, and research programs based on the idea that the only way to answer such questions is by reconstructing the connectivity of brains in their entirety. This view also implies that the best way to understand the details of brain function is to recapitulate their history using artificial neural networks. While this viewpoint has received support in the last few years from work showing that computers can win complex games, the brain plays a much more complex game―the "game" of biological survival―which Purves concludes is based on trial-and-error experience.
Purves has spent his career on the leading edge of decoding the nervous system. He consistently forwards new hypotheses to make sense of the phenomena that define our reality, and this book seeks to lay bare his insightful framework. (David Eagleman, PhD, neuroscientist at Stanford, creator of The Brain on PBS, New York Times bestselling author)
In Brains as Engines of Association, Dale Purves has produced a well-formulated, highly accessible, provocative perspective that challenges the reader to think deeply about brain mechanisms of behavior, while guiding them through a wondrous tour of human endeavor that draws attention to relevant insights from biology, psychology, physics, and philosophy. The journey supports a wholly empirical explanation for brain function that Dale has championed, and includes evidence from his studies on visual and auditory perception that are sure to engage the interests of a broad audience (David Fitzpatrick, Max Planck Florida Institute for Neuroscience)
Over the past 20 years, Purves has developed a theory of perception that he calls 'a wholly empirical strategy.' In this book, he provides a lucid explanation and comprehensive defense of his provocative ideas, and sets it in a broader evolutionary context. In addition to being of broad and general interest, it challenges biologists to find out how the brain accomplishes the remarkable feats that Purves documents. (Joshua R. Sanes, Harvard University)