Freakin’ awesome lecture

Edward W. Snowdon and the Wesleyan University Synapses to Self Series

STEPHEN GROSSBERG
Boston University

The Brain’s Cognitive Dynamics: The Link Between Brain Learning, Attention, and Consciousness

Date: Tuesday, November 28, 2006
Time: 8:00 pm
Venue: 107 SHANKLIN

How does a brain give rise to a mind? How can the vividness of daily experience be represented in “the little gray cells” that constitute our brains? How do our brains continue to learn throughout life? Why are we Intentional Beings who learn expectations about what is about to occur and can get startled or upset if it does not occur? Why are we Attentional Beings who can focus upon some events and be oblivious to others? What sort of brain events can become conscious? Finally, do these questions have a unified answer? An enormous amount of progress has been made during the past forty years in discovering and modeling the principles and mechanisms whereby a brain gives rise to a mind. This talk will introduce some of the concepts and models that propose answers to the questions above. In addition, these models have been specialized for use in solving large-scale technological problems that require an ability to autonomously discover and learn intelligent hypotheses about a changing world.