The Functional Mind II


A cartography of the human psyche

“We are not smarter because we have more neurons, we have more neurons because we are smarter.”– el Loco Gringo

OK children, we now get down to the real nitty gritty. How does the mind really work? We will disregard the physical aspects and concentrate only on the logical aspects of operation. Time to quit talking baby talk and psycho babble.

The protohuman brain consists of only a few logical determinations. Sensory I/O, Interface, the ANN and it’s associated defense mechanisms. Auxiliary support and control mechanisms are outside the our direct purview. The sensory I/O consists of the sight, sound, smell, proprioceptor input, (pain, location, heat, cold etc). The interface is that part of the mind which transforms input from the sensory I/O into a form usable by the defense mechanisms. (turns photons into a spectrum of intensity and color, turns vibrations in the air into sound. The output of the sensory I/O is not reality but a representation of reality. The ANN is the Allocated Neural Network, dedicated to the maintenance and modification of the defense mechanisms, and excluding that part of the mind devoted to autonomic responses. Estimate 200-300 cc of brain mass. This is the I, the me/not me, the seat of consciousness. It thinks real time. Time is the missing element in the understanding of the mind, that element ignored by the various ‘ists. Getting the timing right is crucial to the survival of this critter. It takes time to think. If the timing is too short the defense mechanism will be relatively unsophisticated. If too long, it will be spending too much time. If Charlie Chimp is standing around the Savannah with his head up his butt, thinking about doing the ugly bump with Poly Protohuman, and his response to a threat is not fast enough, or sophisticated enough, he won’t be doing Poly tonight and we won’t have a Stanford Dept of Psychology for el Loco Gringo to make fun of., and that would make him very sad. So an optimal time evolved. about 1/2 second. Using his newly evolved ability to use tools and implements, Charlie Chimp (Alpha Male) could now beat the subservient males about the head and shoulders with a stick guaranteeing his primacy in the poon tang receiving department and reinforcing the taboo.

There is a time imposed limit on the number of neurons that this type of mind can utilize.

Sometime between 50,000 and 2,900,000 years ago the greatest evolutionary leap occurred since the first few neurons clumped together. Wet ware. This miracle allowed the thinking to be done off line and the resultant changes implemented. Indexing allowed for the possibility of not accessing the data directly, but indirectly. ie with the reprogram able wet ware it is necessary only to know the location of the data, not the data itself. This mind is capable of handling many more neurons without compromising the timing constraints.

People think backwards. We are not super-chimps. it’s a whole new ball game.

Introducing the unANN, the unAllocated Neural Network, a free form mass of neurons (2000cc) that can be programmed for specific functions and used as a storage area that can be accessed via indexing by the ANN. It is now possible for the defense mechanisms to become much more sophisticated. They are so much more sophisticated that a new word is needed. Algorithm.

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  • Chance D. Saunders  On February 2, 2013 at 11:54 am

    Two groups of cells were examined: a group that received contingent reinforcement and a control group that received noncontingent reinforcement. In the contingent reinforcement group, the cells received seven depolarizations over a 10-min training period. Each of these depolarizations elicited a plateau potential in B51, which was immediately followed by a brief (6 sec) iontophoretic puff of DA. In the control group, cells also received seven depolarizations and DA puffs, but the DA puff occurred 40 sec after the plateau potential. Contingent reinforcement produced a significant decrease in the burst threshold and a significant increase in the input resistance as compared to cells in the control group ( Fig. 8 ). The changes produced in B51 by the single-cell analog of operant conditioning are similar to those produced by both the in vitro analog ( Nargeot et al. 1999b ) and in vivo training ( Brembs et al. 2002 ). These data indicate that mechanisms intrinsic to B51 are responsible for both induction and maintenance of the biophysical changes associated with reward operant conditioning. In addition, the results suggest that aspects of operant conditioning and DA-mediated reward can be reconstituted and analyzed in single-cultured neurons.

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