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Our human future

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Old 22-03-2012, 11:45 PM   #1
John Nicholson
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Our human future

Our human future

this is an explanation of why I consider that early perfection in primary education is critical to our human future.
Education in regards to knowledge availability has clearly never been has available to everyone on the planet as it is today. If you can count and read the latest research in most areas of human endeavour is open to you providing you own or have use of a computer and the Internet.
Simply because of the effectiveness of the computer in the last 20 years there has obviously been a spread of all information available to everyone, basically to all parts of our world where computers are available for public use.
Why then is our human welfare as regards the availability of food and shelter clearly so unfairly distributed. Even in the United States people are living in tents and caravans without jobs and dependent on food stamps.
Without a sustained effort to provide adequate amounts of food in storage as regards the northern hemisphere harvest we will be faced with a situation where cereal crops are being turned into fossil fuel just to maintain our habits in regards to unlimited car driving. Not only to work but as a considered right for all as a permitted leisure activity.
One startling fact. From this year's American market in cereals where over 400,000,000 tons, of cereals have been produced already one quarter of that will go into biofuel production. Without an exponential increase in cereal production starvation is already facing those people in the world without the cash to buy the ever more expensive food. At least one third of the people on our planet containing 7 billion human beings are without adequate housing.
Millions of people are without jobs without shelter and with a little hope for their future, without work or effective education millions of young people are addicted to drugs or cheap alcohol.
In the past education at the higher levels have only been available to the very wealthy, or those that we consider to be the most intelligent. Cost restrictions relating to higher education are forcing young people into massive debts even before they start their working life. Previous figures in the Western world show that it needed five people working to keep one pensioner nowadays it needs for people working to keep one pensioner. Education is the only possible way we can deal with the requirements of so many people requiring better quality food reasonable clothing and the right to a reasonable home. In every area of human endeavour we need to become more able if we are to provide for all a life worth living.
My 15 years in consideration of basic skills development has brought me to believe that every healthy child born has adequate intelligence to teach itself to speak. That clearly indicates to me that they are quite capable of developing perfection within counting and reading very much ably than they are, at the present time, if we simply utilise the knowledge we have to give the explanation that is necessary to young parents in order that they can instruct their own children in counting and reading before they enter regular education, in order that children's counting and reading is internationally at its highest level as the children start their formal education.
Historically numeracy was obviously our first essential development, measurement in every manner demands that we understand numbers, mankind would utilise signs to represent quantity years before it used signs to represent words. European reading we believe started with the development of written language around 3500 years ago, in China early Chinese writing based on pictorial styls has been dated between eight and ten thousand years of age. Clearly with simple charcoal man would be able to show others simple pictures as explanations of what they have seen or what they thought. Our recent research considers that our human species development was similar to our modern day abilities around 50,000 years ago, and our DNA indicates that we are all related directly to one lady in Africa live 500 years ago if we simply take an average of five generations per hundred years we share a species mentality involving over 2 1/2 million generations, it therefore appears to me that our natural intelligence is most likely to be similar when we are born, and very unlikely to be similar by the time we are mature. Today's research considers it more likely that we are capable of 90% variation regarding nurture, rather than what was previously thought.
I consider that without neurological damage previous to our birth, not our common intelligence is very similar, modern research indicates this consistently, our natural ability to speak our natural language is our evolutionary gift, copying everything that our parents do as our physical strength increases is also quite natural, so the natural awareness of where we are living builds quickly into capable mapping ability, so it is the we are born with imperceptible personal learning abilities.
Where parents are trained efficiently, which I consider is an easy task for them, they can be quickly taught to teach their own children from an extremely early age to physically understand number manipulation simply through utilising three simple maps, the first map illustrates the letter is one to 10 and is provided by the child's hands, the second map is a three strand Abacus containing 10 counters written in the child's own language as to the counters value. Finally it counting board illustrating seven columns of numbers including the words we utilise to recognise those numbers will bring all children to understanding how to count to 10,000,000 quite easily.
Use of the Abacus in two thirds of the world quite naturally created massive number awareness within Russia and China Japan and originally with the original inhabitants of South America.
Central Europe use`s a slavian Abacus to teach with, however all English speaking countries have dispensed with Abacus or counting boards hundreds of years previously.
Once the development of numeracy became dependent on what is commonly known as the Arabic/Indian writing system for numbers our educated scholars were able to create understanding in numbers simply by written marks,
the child's first map its own two hands teaching in the meaning of each number, the Abacus teachers the child to understand the value of columns that relate to the initial 10 numbers that it has learnt quickly becomes to understand the meaning of words and numbers as it gives explanation:
my chosen system of training children to read can easily be adapted to any other European language used by European language users to teach themselves English of vica versa.
If we consider that our human intelligence is spread equally throughout all races on the earth of it is therefore quite obvious that one counting system of is adequate for all the races if that counting system is perfected,
our common ability to follow the physical processors that our parents utilise indicates our powerful natural memory by the time children are two years of age they can well understand the meaning of many words as their ability to speak is developing, a major part of their imperceptible learning.
We can quite easily bring about perfect understanding of number processing utilising physical demonstrations. these physical demonstrations utilise kinaesthetic memory which is our natural memory combining that kinaesthetic memory with language allows the child to understand both the language and the means of calculation showing physical subtraction of physical addition the child has the ability to understand what is happening and the mental ability with words to illustrate the calculation is it understands physically.

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Old 22-03-2012, 11:47 PM   #2
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Our human Future con

So the counting road to reading is as natural to children as it is possible to be, after beginning to understand counting in the four dimensional is that we are able to understand it the physical meaning of quantity our expression of quantity in language, then our explanation of quantity in symbols and finally our expressions of quantity in written words,
parents can be shown how to effect efficient teaching of all arithmetic in a few hours of reading and demonstration, watching their children develop the mental abilities to count efficiently will bring the parents and children closer together, for those physical lessons which require explanation and building language ability consistently.
It is my experience in 15 years of research and consideration that children whose number awareness is being continually tried and tested in simple exercises as in a sum a second the quick addition of finger illustrations changing quickly on either hand.
At this stage the child is understanding numbers verbally, introduction to written numbers can be easily demonstrated, but writing words of course is impossible,
Reading age for any child where numeracy is virtually perfect in regards to the child understanding how 10 million can be built up in numbers simply through the understanding of words and columns, the child will probably be around 3 1/2 years to 4 years of age, this early arithmetic ability will have developed the child's mind, already the child is recognising written numbers, but we are not asking it to right any words, I believe that chanting can be efficiently remembered by all children along time before they understand what they chant. I also believe that the can chant most efficiently in rhythm , the chant can then be related to either numbers, letters or eventually words,
by the time any child is four years of age, its first rhythmic chanting of the alphabet should be perfected where parents are working successfully in arithmetic, perfecting the child's child chant of the alphabet, is the first step in reading it is a step in reading as ancient as the alphabetic itself.
The second step in reading, is therefore permanently bonding the letter in the alphabetic sound with the shape of the letter.
When it is obvious that the child can link every letter with its alphabetic sound quite easily, the third step is to link the alternative phonetic sounds with the letter, simply by using familiar small objects with low case letters has words used to link the child with the phonetic sound and a physical memory of the word eventually in the same manner that they can remember the physical word as a number obviously sounding the first letter to form then memory of the phonetic sound used in words naturally,
repetitive reading where the child is sounding out the words themselves to the parent is the fourth and hardest step to be undertaken in reading but the link between child and parent is already well associated, teaching arithmetic parental realisation is taking place as to just what the child needs to learn if they are to learn to read efficiently themselves, in perfecting parental teaching both sides are establishing closer understanding with their own children, and of course understanding the level of knowledge that the child is naturally aware of, this formal schooling teaching carried out in systematic manner will build perfection in every healthy child.
If we teach one generation to teach their own children properly we should never have to do this again, teaching systematically will be adopted in kindergartens and primary schools simply because the majority of children should already be acquainted with those systematic steps.
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Old 23-03-2012, 12:15 AM   #3
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System one for everyone

System one for everyone

The Counting Road To Reading

This is my personal effort to understand our human minds, in order that I may show every parent and teacher what they must learn in one day in order that the numeracy and reading are taught logically and efficiently.
From this moment on I believe that the fifteen years of my life taken to understand the human mind, in order to build a simple system of primary education based initially on the simplicity of the decimal system will quickly improve the lives for over the one hundred million children a year who start primary education.
Please assist me to build a better world utilising the knowledge we already have in order to create the knowledge we shall need in order to feed and allow the seven billion human beings already on our planet to live peaceful and useful lives.
Only the parents or guardians of our young children can ensure that they learn easily the correct lesson at the earliest possible moment in their lives.
Give your own child a quarter of an hour every day for two years between the ages of three and six and our natural human intelligence will guarantee perfection.
15 years of my life & 180 hours of your life will ensure that your child can count and read perfectly.
Perfecting your child's understanding of quantity
The simplicity of the decimal system ensures that we can understand the meaning of every number between one and 10 million by the use of 30 words and one perfect column repeated seven times.
Much simple information comes from our own hands.

This Is The First Perfection Your Child Can Achieve
Draw run your own child's hands when they are placed flat on a table, and then write the numbers associated with each finger in both the numeral and the written word. Then tap each finger individually on the child's first map.
In practice we explain the number appointed to each finger individually simply starting with Mr five and Mr six as soon as the child can speak, then proving one and ten is easy, hold the fingertips together and identify three and eight.
Illustrate that each pair of fingers adds up to 11 which therefore means every number between 1 and 10 added together gives a total of 55.
Why do we do this? because we are building a physical memory of meaning, the child quickly understands the fact that each hand is a reverse copy of the other.
The perfection of five is easily proven, meaning is then created visually as 5+1 5+2 5+3 5+4 and finally 5+5 equalling 10.
Neither you or your child will then forget the sum total of the numerals one to ten.
Count the numbers on each hand the total is 15 on the left-hand and 40 on the right-hand.
Illustrate with four pairs of fingers the creation of 10 finally linking five and 10 together producing 15,
Once your child as absorbed all these facts, simply by utilising both hands facing your child, you can begin my lesson described as
which is really three sums a second. The child checks the number illustrated on either hand by a subtraction from five and then adds the two totals together.
5 min a day for an extended period will produce perfection in visualising all the numbers 1 to 10 for a lifetime, as well as ensuring ease of adaption to adding numerals in their teens.
Every child can initially be introduced to Abacus one at three years of age, this will be the child's first initiation of numbers in columns. Adequate instructions will be provided with every Abacus model.
A representation of Abacus one and the Abacus one map will also be part of your initial teaching instructions, included within the thousand essential words that need to be learnt as simple pictures.
Simple repetition of words recognised as pictures including vital linking short words e.g. and this that and the other alongside alphabetical and phonetic sounds related to the alphabet, need to be committed to perfect memory in order that the child can finally teach itself to read words that will be faced together with parents initially,
procedures utilised in Abacus one need to be perfected by all teachers and all parents if they are to demonstrate this most useful visual memory creation item in regards to understanding arithmetic process, in just the same manner the Abacus one needs to be understood with simple games utilised to demonstrate simple arithmetic addition created between one and 10 million.

So it is that reading five pages in order to prepare yourself to demonstrate efficiently everything you need to teacher and child regarding everything in simple arithmetic adding subtraction multiplication and division in such a manner that the efficiency of your child's understanding will create clearer understanding of all mathematic principles in the future.
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Old 23-03-2012, 12:59 AM   #4
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Stanislas Dehaene

Quoting directly from a new chapter in the work of Stanislas Dehaene the revised edition of

” The Number Sense”

the world renowned French Neuroscientist, I am including this to give further evidence regarding early education, especially relating to the future development of neuroscience within contemporary education.

Taken from page 246. When we think about numbers or do arithmetic, we do not solely rely on a purified, ethereal, abstract concept of number. Our brain immediately links the abstract number to concrete notions of size, location and time. We do not do arithmetic in the abstract. Rather, we use brain circuits to accomplish mathematical tasks that also serve to guide our hands and eyes in space--

circuits that are present in the monkey brain, and certainly did not evolve for mathematics, but have been pre-empted and put to use in a different domain.

This is a perfect illustration of the neuronal recycling principle, which I introduced in my recent book reading in the brain. I posit that recent human inventions including letters and numbers and all the concepts of mathematics, have to find their niche in a human brain that did not evolve to accommodate them.

Taken from page 268. In brief, during the preschool years, the establishment of a two-way dialogue between our number sense and our counting system leads to a very closely integrated and improved system, where each symbol is automatically attached to an increasingly precise meaning.

We are only now beginning to understand how this change occurs at the brain level. After studying how monkey neurons encode the numerosity of sets of dots.

Page 277. Stanislas Dehaene Conclusion

The Conclusion

As David and Ann Premac note. ”a Theory of education could only be derived from understanding the mind that is to be educated”. Indeed we now possess a refined understanding of the budding mathematicians mind. Great strides have been made in our understanding of how arithmetic is implanted in the brain. Applications of cognitive neuroscience to education are no longer “a Bridge too far”. On the contrary, many conceptual and empirical research methods are now available. Innovative educational programs can be introduced, and we have all the tools in hand to study their impact on children`s brains and minds.
The classroom should be our next laboratory. Stanislas Dehaene Conclusion


Every Scientific statement has to proven.

Over the last decade great strides have been made in understanding just how the brain works, it has been a great privilege for me to read the works and experiment `s of scientists with extraordinary abilities and immense patience in carrying out the most detailed research.

Considering all the articles on neuroscience that I have read over the last fifteen years, my regard for Stanislas Dehaene, is at the highest level. I believe that his previous mathematical studies have assisted his research enormously, and that the knowledge built up about mathematical understanding has led to equally valuable lessons regarding reading ability and observations within our species capabilities. We were not utilising reading and counting formally when the majority of our evolution was taking place, understanding this and utilising the brain functions we have has guided me to producing a system of early education which I consider to be virtually fool proof, regarding the abilities of all healthy children to count perfectly and read quickly when we teach them properly.

Understanding system one,

utilising it within one's own family, utilising it as a starting point in nursery schools, in kindergarten`s, in reception classes in our primary schools, alongside general assistance where children have failed to be taught previously , system one taught methodically provides an easily understood systematic method for normal adults to adopt simply by taking only one days qualified demonstration, or reading and trialling themselves.
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Old 25-03-2012, 10:58 PM   #5
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The latest relevant research

13th March 2012 Science Finds more out about children’s ability.
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Scientists Tap the Cognitive Genius of Tots to Make Computers Smarter
ScienceDaily (Mar. 13, 2012) — People often wonder if computers make children smarter. Scientists at the University of California, Berkeley, are asking the reverse question: Can children make computers smarter? And the answer appears to be 'yes.'
UC Berkeley researchers are tapping the cognitive smarts of babies, toddlers and preschoolers to program computers to think more like humans.
If replicated in machines, the computational models based on baby brainpower could give a major boost to artificial intelligence, which historically has had difficulty handling nuances and uncertainty, researchers said
"Children are the greatest learning machines in the universe. Imagine if computers could learn as much and as quickly as they do," said Alison Gopnik a developmental psychologist at UC Berkeley and author of "The Scientist in the Crib" and "The Philosophical Baby."
In a wide range of experiments involving lollipops, flashing and spinning toys, and music makers, among other props, UC Berkeley researchers are finding that children -- at younger and younger ages -- are testing hypotheses, detecting statistical patterns and drawing conclusions while constantly adapting to changes.
"Young children are capable of solving problems that still pose a challenge for computers, such as learning languages and figuring out causal relationships," said Tom Griffiths, director of UC Berkeley's Computational Cognitive Science Lab. "We are hoping to make computers smarter by making them a little more like children."
For example, researchers said, computers programmed with kids' cognitive smarts could interact more intelligently and responsively with humans in applications such as computer tutoring programs and phone-answering robots.
And that's not all.
"Your computer could be able to discover causal relationships, ranging from simple cases such as recognizing that you work more slowly when you haven't had coffee, to complex ones such as identifying which genes cause greater susceptibility to diseases," said Griffiths. He is applying a statistical method known as Bayesian probability theory to translate the calculations that children make during learning tasks into computational models.
This spring, to consolidate their growing body of work on infant, toddler and preschooler cognition, Gopnik, Griffiths and other UC Berkeley psychologists, computer scientists and philosophers will launch a multidisciplinary center at the campus's Institute of Human Development to pursue this line of research.
Exploration key to developing young brains
A growing body of child cognition research at UC Berkeley suggests that parents and educators put aside the flash cards, electronic learning games and rote-memory tasks and set kids free to discover and investigate.
"Spontaneous and 'pretend play' is just as important as reading and writing drills," Gopnik said.
Of all the primates, Gopnik said, humans have the longest childhoods, and this extended period of nurturing, learning and exploration is key to human survival. The healthy newborn brain contains a lifetime's supply of some 100 billion neurons which, as the baby matures, grow a vast network of synapses or neural connections -- about 15,000 by the age of 2 or 3 -- that enable children to learn languages, become socialized and figure out how to survive and thrive in their environment.
Adults, meanwhile, stop using their powers of imagination and hypothetical reasoning as they focus on what is most relevant to their goals, Gopnik said. The combination of goal-minded adults and open-minded children is ideal for teaching computers new tricks.
"We need both blue-sky speculation and hard-nosed planning," Gopnik said. Researchers aim to achieve this symbiosis by tracking and making computational models of the cognitive steps that children take to solve problems in the following and other experiments.
Calculating the lollipop odds
In UC Berkeley psychologist Fei Xu's Infant Cognition and Language Lab, pre-verbal babies are tested to see if they can figure out the odds of getting the color of lollipop they want based on the proportions of black and pink lollipops they can see in two separate jars. One jar holds more pink lollipops than black ones, and the other holds more black than pink.
After the baby sees the ratio of pink to black lollipops in each jar, a lollipop from each jar is covered, so the color is hidden, then removed and placed in a covered canister next to the jar. The baby is invited to take a lollipop and, in most cases, crawls towards the canister closest to the jar that held more pink lollipops.
"We think babies are making calculations in their heads about which side to crawl to, to get the lollipop that they want," Xu said.
The importance of pretend play
Gopnik is studying the "golden age of pretending," which typically happens between ages 2 and 5, when children create and inhabit alternate universes. In one of her experiments, preschoolers sing "Happy Birthday" whenever a toy monkey appears and a music player is switched on. When the music player is suddenly removed, preschoolers swiftly adapt to the change by using a wooden block to replace the music player so the fun game can continue.
Earlier experiments by Gopnik -- including one in which she makes facial expressions while tasting different kinds of foods to see if toddlers can pick up on her preferences -- challenge common assumptions that young children are self-centered and lack empathy, said Gopnik, and indicate that, at an early age, they can place themselves in other people's shoes.
Preschoolers take new evidence into account
UC Berkeley psychologists Tania Lombrozo and Elizabeth Bonawitz are finding that preschoolers don't necessarily go with the simplest explanation, especially when presented with new evidence. In an experiment conducted at Berkeley and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, preschoolers were shown a toy that lit up and spun around. They were told that a red block made the toy light up, a green one made it spin and a blue one could do both.
It would have been easiest to assume the blue block was activating the toy when it simultaneously spun and lit up. But when the preschoolers saw there were very few blue blocks compared to red and green ones, many of them calculated the odds and decided that a combination of red and green blocks was causing the toy to spin and light up at the same time, which is an appropriate answer.
"In other words, children went with simplicity when there wasn't strong evidence for an alternative, but as evidence accumulated, they followed its lead," Lombrozo said. Like the children in the study, computers would also benefit from looking at new possibilities for cause and effect based on changing odds.
Overall, the UC Berkeley researchers say they will apply what they have learned from the exploratory and "probabilistic" reasoning demonstrated by the youngsters in these and other experiments to make computers smarter, more adaptable -- and more human.
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Old 25-03-2012, 11:02 PM   #6
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Why Aren't We Smarter Already? Evolutionary Limits On Cognition
ScienceDaily (Dec. 7, 2011) — We put a lot of energy into improving our memory, intelligence, and attention. There are even drugs that make us sharper, such as Ritalin and caffeine. But maybe smarter isn't really all that better. A new paper published in Current Directions in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science, warns that there are limits on how smart humans can get, and any increases in thinking ability are likely to come with problems.

The authors looked to evolution to understand about why humans are only as smart as we are and not any smarter. "A lot of people are interested in drugs that can enhance cognition in various ways," says Thomas Hills of the University of Warwick, who cowrote the article with Ralph Hertwig of the University of Basel. "But it seems natural to ask, why aren't we smarter already?"
Tradeoffs are common in evolution. It might be nice to be eight feet tall, but most hearts couldn't handle getting blood up that high. So most humans top out under six feet. Just as there are evolutionary tradeoffs for physical traits, Hills says, there are tradeoffs for intelligence. A baby's brain size is thought to be limited by, among other things, the size of the mother's pelvis; bigger brains could mean more deaths in childbirth, and the pelvis can't change substantially without changing the way we stand and walk.
Drugs like Ritalin and amphetamines help people pay better attention. But they often only help people with lower baseline abilities; people who don't have trouble paying attention in the first place can actually perform worse when they take attention-enhancing drugs. That suggests there is some kind of upper limit to how much people can or should pay attention. "This makes sense if you think about a focused task like driving," Hills says, "where you have to pay attention, but to the right things -- which may be changing all the time. If your attention is focused on a shiny billboard or changing the channel on the radio, you're going to have problems."
It may seem like a good thing to have a better memory, but people with excessively vivid memories have a difficult life. "Memory is a double-edged sword," Hills says. In post-traumatic stress disorder, for example, a person can't stop remembering some awful episode. "If something bad happens, you want to be able to forget it, to move on."
Even increasing general intelligence can cause problems. Hills and Hertwig cite a study of Ashkenazi Jews, who have an average IQ much higher than the general European population. This is apparently because of evolutionary selection for intelligence in the last 2,000 years. But, at the same time, Ashkenazi Jews have been plagued by inherited diseases like Tay-Sachs disease that affect the nervous system. It may be that the increase in brain power has caused an increase in disease.
Given all of these tradeoffs that emerge when you make people better at thinking, Hills says, it's unlikely that there will ever be a supermind. "If you have a specific task that requires more memory or more speed or more accuracy or whatever, then you could potentially take an enhancer that increases your capacity for that task," he says. "But it would be wrong to think that this is going to improve your abilities all across the board." Learn to the Rhythm: Nerve Cells Acting as Metronomes Are Necessary for Certain Memory Processes
ScienceDaily (Feb. 17, 2011) — Usually, we associate rhythms with dance and music. But they also play an important role in the brain. When billions of neurons communicate with each other, certain rhythmic activity patterns arise. The proper metre in this interplay is provided by nerve cells that do not excite other cells, but inhibit their activity instead.

One type of these inhibiting cells acts in a particularly fast and efficient way and is therefore thought to be crucial for memory formation and information processing in neuronal networks. Scientists from Freiburg and the UK were able to specifically switch off this cell type and to observe the consequences for memory formation. Surprisingly, they found that working memory is highly dependent on fast inhibitory cells, whereas spatial reference memory can operate without these neuronal metronomes.
In the journal Nature Neuroscience, Marlene Bartos from the Institute for Physiology I and the Bernstein Center of the University of Freiburg and her colleagues Peer Wulff from the University of Aberdeen and William Wisden from the Imperial College London describe how they were able to specifically switch off these fast inhibiting "interneurons" in the hippocampus of mice. This part of the brain is central to the formation of spatial memories. When the interneurons' output was switched off, the mice behaved completely normal.
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Old 25-03-2012, 11:09 PM   #7
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Mechanism Found That Prepares the a Newborn's Brain for Information Processing
ScienceDaily (May 14, 2010) — With their French colleagues, researchers at the University of Helsinki have found a mechanism in the memory center of newborn that adjusts the maturation of the brain for the information processing required later in life.
The study is published in the Journal of Neuroscience.
The brain cells in the brain of a newborn are still quite loosely interconnected. In the middle of chaos, they are looking for contact with each other and are only later able to operate as interactive neural networks.
Many cognitive operations, such as attention, memory, learning and certain states of sleep are based on rhythmic interactions of neural networks. For a long time the researchers have been interested in finding the stage in the development of the brain in which the functional characteristics and interconnections are sufficiently developed for these subtle brain functions.
Key players in this maturation process include a type of nerve cells called interneurons, and recent research sheds light on their functional development. The researchers have noticed that the activeness of the interneurons change dramatically during early development. In the memory center of the brain they found a mechanism which adjusts changes in the activeness of interneurons.
The interneurons nerve cells are kind of controller cells. In the nervous system of a newborn they promote the creation of nerve cell contacts, and on the other hand they prevent premature rhythmic activity of neural networks. During development the controlling role will change, and the result is that the neural network becomes more efficiently rhythmic. This can be seen, for example, in the strengthening of the EEG signal during sleep.
The mechanism adjusting the activity of the interneurons is related to the development phase which prepares the brain to process and handle information needed later in life. The finding may also offer more detailed means to intervene in the electric disorders of developing neural networks, such as epilepsy.

Only when the scientists presented the animals with an orientation task that required a functional working memory, impairments became obvious. The mice had to learn to reach a goal within a Y-shaped maze. Animals with deactivated interneurons made significantly more mistakes than their peers from the untreated control group, turning more often into the wrong arm of the maze although they had been there before. This indicated that the working memory was affected by the missing fast inhibitory cells. Remarkably, the spatial reference memory, which had been formed during several days of training, showed no such decrease in performance.
Up to now, impairment of the working memory, common in schizophrenia, had been attributed to dysfunctional inhibitory neurons in the prefrontal cortex. The new results by Bartos, Wisden and Wulff show that this disease can be partly traced back to a change in the function of fast inhibitory cells in the hippocampus.
How Touch and Movement Contribute to the Development of the Brain
ScienceDaily (Oct. 14, 2011) — Neuroscientists at the Excellence Cluster CIN at the University of Tübingen together with French colleagues uncovered in an animal model the neuronal processes that underlay the development of sensory maps in the developing brain.
Every expectant mother is aware of fetal movements in the late stages of pregnancy. It is known that the frequency of fetal movements is correlated with the physical fitness of the newborn child. What is the functional role of these irregular, non-coordinated movements in the brain development? And what are the neuronal processes that facilitate the brain development in result of these movements?
The Neuroscientists Dr. Anton Sirota from the Excellence Cluster Werner Reichardt-Center for Integrative Neuroscience (CIN) at the University of Tübingen and Dr. Rustem Khazipov from the Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale (INSERM) in France pursue these questions in an intensive and long standing collaboration. In an article published in the current issue of the scientific journal Science they could show that this process is controlled by so called early gamma oscillations (EGO) in the developing brain.
In the first week of life newborn rats are at a similar developmental stage as children in the third trimester of pregnancy. Newborn rats display perpetual twitches and jerks reminiscent of the human fetal movements. These spontaneous twitches as well as passive touches help to establish neuronal topographical maps of the body parts in the brain. Each stimulation of a single whisker (through twitches of the snout or the touch of mother or littermates) results in an unique pattern of neural activity, that the authors termed "early gamma oscillations" (EGO), which are exclusively confined to neural circuits of the thalamus and neocortex, which are genetically pre-wired to represent this particular whisker.
The sensory information of the whisker and the neuronal activity during development are instrumental for establishing a functional topographic map of the sensory information. The high frequency of EGO of about 40 Hz is essential for strengthening neuronal connections. Every repetition strengthens further the connections between neurons in cortex and thalamus into a topographic and functional unit. During the maturation of the brain and the neuronal machinery, the EGO gradually disappear and they are being replaced by gamma oscillations of the adult which serve horizontal binding and other integrative cortical functions in the mature brain.

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Old 25-03-2012, 11:27 PM   #8
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For The First Time, Patterns Of Excitation Waves Found In Brain's Visual Processing Center

ScienceDaily (July 31, 2007) — Neuroscientists have long believed that vision is processed in the brain along circuits made up of neurons, similar to the way telephone signals are transferred through separate wires from one station to another. But scientists at Georgetown University Medical Center discovered that visual information is also processed in a different way, like propagating waves oscillating back and forth among brain areas.
“What we found is that signals pass through brain areas like progressive waves, back and forth, a little bit like what fans do at baseball games,” said the study’s corresponding author, Jian-young Wu, Ph.D., an associate professor in the Department of Physiology and Biophysics at Georgetown. Just as the stadium wave is coordinated and travels through the crowd, a collective pattern emerges from the activities of millions of neurons in the visual areas, he said, explaining, “It simply makes sense that brain function is the result of large numbers of neurons working together.”
This challenges longstanding notions about how the brain processes sensory information, Wu said. “One traditional model theorizes that neurons are hooked together into specific circuits. However, new imaging methods tell us that there are more than just circuits.”
Wu and his colleagues visualized wave-like patterns in the brain cortex using a new method called voltage sensitive dye imaging. They used a special dye that binds to the membrane of neurons and changes color when electrical potential passes along active neurons.
Traditionally, scientists have studied brain activity by placing electrodes in the brain and measuring the electrical currents that are related to neuronal activity. Because it is difficult to put many electrodes into the brain, the spatiotemporal pattern of the neuronal activity has long been ignored. “Now, with optical methods, we can watch sequential activation of different sectors of the visual cortex when the brain is processing sensory information," Wu said.
Wu believes wave patterns play an important role in initiating and organizing brain activity involving millions to billions of neurons. A few years ago, Wu's imaging group uncovered spiraling waves resembling little hurricanes in animal epilepsy models. Wu thinks that through this hurricane-like spiral pattern, a small area of damaged neural tissue can generate a powerful storm that invades large normal brain areas and starts a seizure attack. This hypothesis would mean that disorders such as epilepsy could be viewed not just as mis-wiring in the brain, but as an abnormal wave pattern that invades normal tissue.
Finding waves during visual processing is an important step toward understanding how the brain processes sensory information, explained Wu. This understanding has the potential to help scientists understand the abnormal waves that are generated in the brains of patients with Parkinson's disease and epilepsy, and how the mind fails when the brain of an Alzheimer’s disease patient cannot properly organize population neuronal activity, he said.
Wu believes that additional research is needed in order to understand both normal and abnormal waves in the human brain. “Understanding how the brain handles these waves will provide further insight into the functioning of one of the most complex systems in the universe,” he said.
These findings are published in the July 5 issue of the journal Neuron. The study was funded by grants from the National Institutes of Health, the Epilepsy Foundation, and Whitehall Foundation. Co-authors include Georgetown post-doctoral fellow Weifeng Xu and two Georgetown graduate students, Xiaoying Huang, and Kentaroh Takagaki. Echoes Discovered In Early Visual Brain Areas Play Role In Working Memory
ScienceDaily (Feb. 18, 2009) — Vanderbilt University researchers have discovered that early visual areas, long believed to play no role in higher cognitive functions such as memory, retain information previously hidden from brain studies. The researchers made the discovery using a new technique for decoding data from functional magnetic resonance imaging or fMRI. The findings are a significant step forward in understanding how we perceive, process and remember visual information.
The results were published Feb. 18 online by Nature.
"We discovered that early visual areas play an important role in visual working memory," Frank Tong, co-author of the research and an associate professor of psychology at Vanderbilt, said. "How do people maintain an active representation of what they have just seen moments ago? This has long been a conundrum in the literature.
"Before, we knew that early visual areas of the cerebral cortex that are the first to receive visual information were exquisitely tuned to process incoming visual signals from the eye, but not to store this information," Tong said. "We also knew that the higher-order brain areas responsible for memory lack the visual sensitivity of early brain areas, but somehow people are able to remember a visual pattern with remarkable precision for many seconds, actually, for as long as they keep thinking about that pattern. Our question was, where is this precise information being stored in the brain?
"Using a new technique to analyze fMRI data, we've found that the fine-scale activity patterns in early visual areas reveal a trace or something like an echo of the stimulus that the person is actively retaining, even though the overall activity in these areas is really weak after the stimulus is removed," Tong continued.
"Visual cortex has always been thought to be more stimulus driven and has not been implicated in cognitive processes such as memory or active maintenance of information," Stephenie Harrison, lead author of the research and a graduate student in the Vanderbilt Psychology Department, said. "By using a neural decoding technique, we were able to read out what people were holding in their visual memory. We believe this sustained visual information could be useful when people must perform complex visual tasks in everyday life."
Research subjects were shown two examples of simple striped patterns at different orientations. They were then told to hold either one or the other of the orientations in their mind while being scanned using fMRI. Orientation has long been known to be one of the first and most basic pieces of visual information coded and processed by the brain.
"Through both evolution and learning, the visual system has developed the most efficient ways to code our natural environment, and the most efficient way to code any basic shape or contour is orientation," Tong said. "We used a decoding method to see if the activity patterns contained information about the remembered orientation, and we found that they do. By analyzing responses over several trials, we were able to accurately read out which of the two orientation patterns a subject was holding in his or her mind over 80 percent of the time."
The researchers found that these predictions held true even when the overall level of activity in these visual areas was very weak, no different than looking at a blank screen. This suggests that the act of remembering an image leaves some sort of faint echo or trace in these brain areas. These activity traces are weak but are quite detailed and rich in information.
"By doing these pattern analyses, we were able to find information that was hidden before. We do not know for sure, but it's possible that a lot of information in the brain might be hidden in such activity patterns," Tong said. "Using this decoding technique and others, neuroscientists might get a better understanding of how the brain represents specific cognitive states involving memory, reminiscing, or other visual experiences that do not obviously lead to a huge amount of activity in the visual areas."
Tong and Harrison are members of the Vanderbilt Vision Research Center. The research was supported with funds from the National Eye Institute, the National Institutes of Health, and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada.


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Old 25-03-2012, 11:32 PM   #9
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Human Working Memory Is Based On Dynamic Interaction Networks in the Brain

ScienceDaily (Apr. 13, 2010) — A research project of the Neuroscience Center of the University of Helsinki sheds light on the neuronal mechanisms sustaining memory traces of visual stimuli in the human brain. The results show that the maintenance of working memory is associated with synchronisation of neurons, which facilitates communication between different parts of the brain. On the basis of interaction between the brain areas, it was even possible to predict the subject's individual working memory capacity.
The results were published last week in the online version of the journal PNAS.
The working memory of an average person can sustain only three of four objects at a time. The brain areas maintaining the working memory are known well, but there is little information about how these areas interact. The research group led by Satu and Matias Palva imaged the brain activity of subjects performing working memory tasks by using magneto- and electroencephalography (MEG and EEG). In addition to this, they developed a new method for using MEG and EEG data to identify networks of fast neuronal interactions, i.e., synchrony, between different areas of the cerebral cortex. With this novel approach, it was possible to reveal functional networks formed by brain areas at the accuracy of milliseconds.
Maintaining of a memory trace synchronised different brain areas
In their study, the researchers mapped almost four billion different neuronal interactions. They were especially interested in rhythmic interactions between different parts of the brain. While sustaining the working memory of visual stimuli, the rhythmic activity of the subject's different brain areas were transiently synchronised. The results reveal that the synchronisation of neuronal activity in different brain areas had a connection both to the maintenance and to the contents of working memory.
The study also revealed several specialized function-specific networks and interactions between them. The network comprising different areas of the brain's frontal and parietal lobes played a central role. These areas are responsible for the coordination of attention and action. The networks in the occipital lobe, on the other hand, handle and maintain the sensory information about the visual stimuli.
Working memory and attention are the cornerstones of our cognition and consciousness -- knowledge about their underlying neuronal mechanisms can be applied, for example, when developing therapeutic and diagnostic methods for Alzheimer's disease, dementia, schizophrenia, perception and learning disorders, autism and other brain diseases.

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Old 25-03-2012, 11:54 PM   #10
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What I think about memory

Why People Can Hold Visual Information in Great Detail in Their Working Memory

ScienceDaily (Feb. 6, 2012) — Researchers have long known that specific parts of the brain activate when people view particular images. For example, a region called the fusiform face area turns on when the eyes glance at faces, and another region called the parahippocampal place area does the same when a person looks at scenes or buildings. However, it's been unknown whether such specialization also exists for visual working memory, a category of memory that allows the brain to temporarily store and manipulate visual information for immediate tasks.
Now, scientists have found evidence that visual working memory follows a more general pattern of brain activity than what researchers have shown with initial visual activity, instead activating a more diffuse area in the front of the brain for all categories of visual stimuli.
The study is entitled "Mapping Brain Activation and Information During Category-Specific Visual Working Memory." It appears in the Articles in Press section of the Journal of Neurophysiology, published by the American Physiological Society.
The researchers worked with 18 healthy adults with normal or corrected vision. Using functional MRI (fMRI), a technique that examines brain activity while subjects are actively performing tasks in an MRI scanner, the researchers had each volunteer view and memorize three sequentially presented images that represented one of four categories: faces, bodies, scenes, or flowers. Between each image, there was a one second delay. Then, after a 10 second delay, the researchers flashed an image from the same category and asked the volunteers to indicate through a button press whether this last image matched one of the previous pictures (half of these "test" images matched one of the previous pictures).
The volunteers did 80 of these trials, 20 of each category. To help make sure they weren't verbally memorizing what they were seeing, which might change the fMRI results, a radio news program ran continuously in the background during the task. Afterwards, the researchers analyzed the fMRI data, looking for which brain areas activated during the short delay between pictures (brain areas active in initial visual activity and encoding) and during the long delay (brain areas active during working memory).
The fMRI data showed that the brain areas previously shown to activate during visualization, all located near the rear of the brain, declined in activity during the 10 second delay, although subtle differences between categories could still be extracted from the data. However, different areas near the front of the brain -- specifically, the bilateral ventrolateral prefrontal cortex, dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and medial frontal gyrus -- became active during the long delay. These areas activated without regard to what type of visual stimulus the volunteers saw, suggesting they activate in a more general pattern for visual working memory with no particular specialization based on image category.
Importance of the Findings
Humans have a remarkable ability to store visual information at high detail over short periods of time. During these storage periods, some of the brain activity seems to shift from visual areas in the rear of the brain to areas in the front that have been suggested to form part of the brain's "control center." These areas do not appear to be specific for particular types of visual information. "We conclude that principles of cortical activation differ between encoding and maintenance of visual material," the authors say. Their findings provide support for current models that locate memory not in specific brain modules but in the concerted action of distributed networks in the brain.
The study was conducted by David E. J. Linden of Cardiff University in Cardiff and Nikolaas N. Oosterhof, Paul E. Downing, and Christoph Klein, all of Bangor University in Bangor, United Kingdom.
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Old 26-03-2012, 01:36 AM   #11
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How Our Mind Is Created Within Our Brain

Humans have a remarkable ability to store visual information at high detail over short periods of time. During these storage periods, some of the brain activity seems to shift from visual areas in the rear of the brain to areas in the front that have been suggested to form part of the brain's "control centre." These areas do not appear to be specific for particular types of visual information.

Over the last fifteen years of my life I have attempted to understand our human species brain function, considering that we are likely to have over 1 million generations whereby everyone of us on the Earth today is clearly related to a lady in Africa who was living around 200,000 years ago it is therefore most likely that our individual intelligence, the natural species intelligence that we are all born with is geared to learn quickly and efficiently, quite obviously and clearly we learn thousands of languages, individually our natural language is the one we are most concerned with. Speaking about English language users, we are using one of the most complete and up-to-date languages on the planet, our language has developed around normal European languages, alphabetically able to be built into sound, as a reading program and strongly connected with the original Latin.

I consider that our natural human thinking takes place in a visual manner. If you consider your childhood you are unlikely to think of it in words, most likely to think of it in visual memory.
Clearly the above research papers are relating to research on brain function, neuroscience is considered to be very relevant to the future of education, reading and thinking about brain function over a long time, has brought me to think that it may be so in the future, but that experimental methods of teaching can be tried quite easily within our normal schools.
Obviously the information coming out of neuroscientific research, clearly indicates high levels of natural ability, if we consider that all our memories are virtually linked in order that we can consider multitudes of factors within our our natural thinking. We may use words and do use to words consider what we're thinking about, but the ideas we are considering with our visually active images, are where our memory is being installed continually throughout our lives. Obviously short-term memories are used in short-term thinking, in the same manner our long-term memories are used within the more philosophical considerations that we utilise to build our lives around.

So it is for my personal realisation, that all our memories which we consider whenever we have decisions to make which is virtually throughout our working day are available to us instantaneously in order that we can make the most logical decisions that we are able to make.

I have long realised that our subconscious sometimes called unconscious abilities are where the powerhouse of our thinking takes place, in the same manner that we can store memory to be used at will instantaneously, so it is that we can store our explanations within words at the speed of light in order to give explanation, our consciousness is the protection we have against danger, and to draw down on our sub conscious thinking abilities consistently. Children as part of the natural human existence are instinctively able to build language and meaning as one, just as they are able to follow complicated physical activities which needed to be learnt quickly for the benefit of their safety during the thousands of years that our brain was evolving. Maria Montessori recognised much about our natural brain activity over 100 years ago, during the years following her formal education first of all in engineering secondly as regards medicine, thirdly specialising in mental problems, finally being given so-called mentally ill children to look after, never ceased to create physical means in order that children can learn quickly.

I discovered that the Abacus created a natural understanding within mathematics and this is still consistently used by one third of the planet.

Simple utilisation of an Abacus created with the ability to read the essential words in any language, means to me that we can build a standard formula of education whereby parents can introduce their own children to arithmetic, and utilising the same neural pathways that develop quite naturally to understand the language of arithmetic, they can simply use visual techniques, in order to acquaint their own children with the natural sounds of their language.

I believe that I have identified a formula of physical activity which can be brought into "The creation of ideas perfectly on a systematic step by step basis".

As regards simple arithmetic three clear mapping situations build children's understanding of language and meaning of the first 10 numbers directly from understanding the numbers they can create from their own hands.

Once perfection is established regarding the meaning of those 10 numbers, exercising with a mobile map of arithmetic quickly establishes understanding relating to the columns we utilise to build our understanding the decimal system.

Fifteen minutes a day, on a regular basis will establish a perfect background in arithmetic for any child being in normal health and having the benefit of parental or nursery school teaching, the third map the child can utilise quite easily with counters to represent numbers, taking every child through seven columns and creating verbal meaning, purely by expressing numbers relating to those seven columns, demonstrating a physical ability for every child to count physically using language in a systematic manner.

Six months working with a three or four-year-old child in arithmetic will bring the child to a point, where the sounds and symbols representing the meaning of our language can be combined quite naturally through the enormous natural abilities that all children possess.
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