Check your neuroskepticism


making me skeptical of my skepticism.

I think that’s the sign of truly intelligent people who can allow themselves to do that.

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I also thought that the neuroconsciousness folks - from Koch to Churchland - were getting out ahead of themselves. But over the last few weeks I’ve been reading “Consciousness and the Brain: Deciphering How the Brain Codes Our Thoughts” - - and the results are pretty impressive. Even if image representation is tricky, the relationship between unconscious processing and consciousness is becoming much clearer thanks to some really cleverly-designed experiments.

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If there is doubt about the ability of fMRI to properly register brain activity, then they should be able to duplicate the experiments with FDG PET imaging which tracks glucose usage in the brain rather than oxygen (assuming that review boards still allow psych experiments that involve the radiation exposure of a PET scan).

Perhaps the FUD about fMRI is just propaganda from Big Positron…

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Unfortunately, the temporal resolution of PET scanning isn’t high enough to use it to verify fMRI in most psychological tasks.

Here’s a figure that compares them directly on temporal resolution:
Or alternatively, page 4 of this document: has an even more detailed figure comparing spatial vs temporal resolutions of a larger number of neuroimaging techniques.

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Thanks for the links. It has been around 19 yrs since I really delved into imaging…

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