“To see or not to see”
Posted: 30 August 2012 12:11 AM   [ Ignore ]
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Just watched an amazing program on the relationship between the senses and how the brain processes information.

It appears that optical illusions are in fact beneficial to us and helps us survive. Even as they are illusions, they allow us to make sense (use it in a practical way) of sensory information.

This may be a hardwired genetic benefit. But it is also disconcerting as, even when we know what we are looking at, our brain may reject the “knowledge” and still be fooled by the image. It is physically unable to present us with conflicting results.

OTOH, it also allows us to “see” smells, sounds, touch. They showed a totally blind (lost sight a couple of months after he was born) cyclist who goes bike riding everyday on a narrow forest path. He uses sonar by clicking his tongue continuously and from the echos he forms an actual picture in his brain of the path. Tests showed that when he hears sounds his visual cortex is activated, even as he has no memories of actually ever seeing anything with his eyes.

We like to think that our senses are seperate and being processed distinct from each other. It appears now that we actually integrate all sensory information, though our visual input is the most influential sense, which may fool our taste or even our hearing.
Tests on culinary chefs proved that when fruit juices were presented to them but the colors were changed, these chefs had a real problem identifying the taste and definitively identify the taste of the fruit juice. One chef identified a yellow juice as apple juice, but in reality it was strawberry juice.

They also showed that sound has a great impact on our taste and touch perception. The same chefs were given a selection of potato chips and had to rate them for crunchiness. But while biting in the chips the sound of the crunch while biting and chewing were modified. It showed clearly that the lower the crunch sound, the more of the chefs rated those chips as very crunchy, even as they were chewing and feeling the crunch itself and the chip physically was not particularly crunchy.

It’s called neural plasticity and shows that the brain, while able to present us with an integrated “result” of our senses is physically (neural function) unable to present certain results which are not pertinent to our interaction with the environment per se.

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Posted: 30 August 2012 12:26 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Then sensory substitution might also interest you. Or maybe this was in your documentary too?

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Posted: 30 August 2012 03:05 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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GdB - 30 August 2012 12:26 AM

Then sensory substitution might also interest you. Or maybe this was in your documentary too?

Yes, very much so. It seems that the brain processes various input in a similar way and can be rewired to interpret the input from any of our senses into a form of recognizable data into another part of sensory cortex. Perhaps similar to the digital processing of data from various sources in a computer.

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Posted: 30 August 2012 12:58 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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So those people who say they have smelled colors while being high may have a poin?

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Posted: 30 August 2012 02:07 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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Alexander80 - 30 August 2012 12:58 PM

So those people who say they have smelled colors while being high may have a poin?

I have no doubt. Which would be a sharing of data in the visual and olfactory cortices.  Think of biting into a slice of lemon and sucking the juice. Puckering your mouth yet ??..... shut eye

They showed a person mouthing the word “ba” while playing the word “ba”. Then they showed a person mouthing the word “va” while playing the sound “ba”.  The visual image of the mouth shaping a V, made you hear “va”.  Only when I closed my eyes did I hear the “ba” as played. My mind refused to recognize the sound B coming from a mouth shaped to produce a V.  Remarkable.

[ Edited: 30 August 2012 02:11 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 30 August 2012 11:47 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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Alexander80 - 30 August 2012 12:58 PM

So those people who say they have smelled colors while being high may have a poin?

Surely they have! Any reason to doubt that? If you change the brain by adding some substance to it, and the person’s behaviour, senses, or feelings change too, then that surely says something about the workings of the brain, doesn’t it?

I think there lies some funny supposition behind your question: that you can’t trust the observations of somebody under influence. But if exactly this influence is what you are interested in, then it is of the utmost importance! If you want to do research in illusions produced by the brain, then it is not much help to do away with the illusions by saying “oh, these do not count, they are not real observations, they are just illusions”.

For my case, I once have seen sound under the influence of cannabis. It was weird because it took me a hell of a lot of concentration to find out what the audible source of my viewings were (it was the high tones produce by an old television set). I just regret it was a one timer: I never had such experiences anymore.

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Posted: 31 August 2012 02:46 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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Alexander80 - 30 August 2012 12:58 PM

So those people who say they have smelled colors while being high may have a poin?

 

There are persons who are natural synesthetes, who have crossovers in sensory perception.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Synesthesia

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Posted: 31 August 2012 03:17 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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TimB - 31 August 2012 02:46 AM
Alexander80 - 30 August 2012 12:58 PM

So those people who say they have smelled colors while being high may have a poin?

 

There are persons who are natural synesthetes, who have crossovers in sensory perception.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Synesthesia


guess the name of each shape in the attachment, Booba or Kiki?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Booba-Kiki.svg

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Posted: 01 September 2012 07:42 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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Write4U - 31 August 2012 03:17 AM

guess the name of each shape in the attachment, Booba or Kiki?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Booba-Kiki.svg

From the wiki on synthesia

95% to 98% of people choose kiki for the angular shape and bouba for the rounded one.

And qualia:

In particular, synesthesia might be relevant to the philosophical problem of qualia, given that synesthetes experience extra qualia (e.g., a colored sound).

cheese

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Posted: 01 September 2012 05:22 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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The knowledge argument
Main article: Mary’s room
In an article “Epiphenomenal Qualia” (1982),[11] Frank Jackson offers what he calls the “knowledge argument” for qualia. One example runs as follows:
Mary the colour scientist knows all the physical facts about colour, including every physical fact about the experience of colour in other people, from the behavior a particular colour is likely to elicit to the specific sequence of neurological firings that register that a colour has been seen. However, she has been confined from birth to a room that is black and white, and is only allowed to observe the outside world through a black and white monitor. When she is allowed to leave the room, it must be admitted that she learns something about the colour red the first time she sees it — specifically, she learns what it is like to see that colour.

Has anyone considered that Mary may see “red” as just a shade of dark gray?

I know of an experiment with cats, where newborn kittens were placed in a room with only vertical objects and no horizontal planes above the floor. After 6 months they introduced the kittens to a room with vertical and horizontal planes (tables and chairs of different heights).
They found that the cats navigated the vertical objects like table legs just fine, but when encountering a horizontal plane from a tabletop at eye level they would run into the table top. They did not see the horizontal plane at all! Their brains were not yet programmed to see horizontal planes. After a few bumps these cats did learn to recognize horizontal planes and had no further problems.

[ Edited: 01 September 2012 05:26 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 02 September 2012 12:18 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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Write4U - 01 September 2012 05:22 PM

They found that the cats navigated the vertical objects like table legs just fine, but when encountering a horizontal plane from a tabletop at eye level they would run into the table top. They did not see the horizontal plane at all! Their brains were not yet programmed to see horizontal planes. After a few bumps these cats did learn to recognize horizontal planes and had no further problems.

Yes, but those kittens did not know “every physical fact about the experience of horizontal planes”. Otherwise it would not have happened.

Poor kittens, how do they survive without neurological knowledge…

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Posted: 02 September 2012 12:36 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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GdB - 02 September 2012 12:18 AM
Write4U - 01 September 2012 05:22 PM

They found that the cats navigated the vertical objects like table legs just fine, but when encountering a horizontal plane from a tabletop at eye level they would run into the table top. They did not see the horizontal plane at all! Their brains were not yet programmed to see horizontal planes. After a few bumps these cats did learn to recognize horizontal planes and had no further problems.

Yes, but those kittens did not know “every physical fact about the experience of horizontal planes”. Otherwise it would not have happened.

Poor kittens, how do they survive without neurological knowledge…

the school of “hard knocks”........

IMO, actual physical sensory experiences, combined with emotional responses allows these neural networks between the sensory cortices to process data at the same time and establish a deeper understanding and experience (network) to the mind.
This is what psychedelic drugs seem to do. But some have the natural ability. The Arts are witness to this.

[ Edited: 02 September 2012 12:41 AM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 02 September 2012 12:36 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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GdB - 02 September 2012 12:18 AM
Write4U - 01 September 2012 05:22 PM

They found that the cats navigated the vertical objects like table legs just fine, but when encountering a horizontal plane from a tabletop at eye level they would run into the table top. They did not see the horizontal plane at all! Their brains were not yet programmed to see horizontal planes. After a few bumps these cats did learn to recognize horizontal planes and had no further problems.

Yes, but those kittens did not know “every physical fact about the experience of horizontal planes”. Otherwise it would not have happened.

Poor kittens, how do they survive without neurological knowledge…

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Perceptual_Adaptation

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Posted: 02 September 2012 12:51 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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daabraham270 - 02 September 2012 12:46 AM

a horizontal plane from a tabletop at eye level they would run into the table top. T

try again…... question

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