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  #21 (permalink)  
Old 9th October, 2001, 09:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Wa11y
I own a Palm Pilot for a reason.
If I owned one I'd just forget it at home, LOL
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  #22 (permalink)  
Old 9th October, 2001, 09:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by dimmreaper
If I owned one I'd just forget it at home, LOL
Wait a minute, do I own one?
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  #23 (permalink)  
Old 10th October, 2001, 12:14 AM
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but if you insist on consulting biology majors on something an English major had already clearly and correctly explained
It's fairly well known that it's a combination of both mechanisms. I thought people might want more detail than you gave

Quote:
why my short term memory is crap
Theories abound. Ultra-short term memory (an hour or so) appears to be down to loops of neurons sending pulses in a set resonant pattern. This gets interfered with by other patterns, so you forget or lose track.
Short term memory seems to be down to strengthening the axon pathways - the more an axon gets used, the bigger and less resistant it gets. If you stop using something (eg, a new skill) you lose it over time.
Long term memory - now here's the fun one. Ideas range from permanently fixed axon pathways to direct DNA encoding. (The latter might explain why the blood/brain barrier is so hard to penetrate.) Conventional opinion seems to be stuck in the rut of thinking that individual mRNA chains hold memory. Some people I know aren't convinced.
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  #24 (permalink)  
Old 10th October, 2001, 12:31 AM
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So I'm easily distracted then? cool
I do have an exceptionaly bad short term memory though, For example when you play card games where you get 10 seconds or so to memorise some cards I'm lucky if I can remember 2 cards.
And I'm never sure if I've just done something or not, I've walked back to my house repeatadly on occasions to make sure I've locked my door because I don't remember doing it.
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Old 16th October, 2001, 01:03 AM
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I was led to believe that our minds and our central nervous systems operated on an analog system.
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Old 16th October, 2001, 03:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Kaitain

Theories abound. Ultra-short term memory (an hour or so) appears to be down to loops of neurons sending pulses in a set resonant pattern. This gets interfered with by other patterns, so you forget or lose track.
Sounds to me like Phil needs a memory upgrade(as in RAM). Hmm . . . now here is a question: How many bytes of memory does Phil have now?

If I had to guess, I'd say the average human probably has gigabytes if not terabytes of memory, but what do I know.
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  #27 (permalink)  
Old 16th October, 2001, 10:28 AM
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but what do I know
Probably as much as me. I keep having to ask the s/o, who can answer up to a point. Beyond that, a mutual friend of ours is a neuroscientist, but restricting her to English rather than medical jargon is a bit of an issue.

Quote:
I was led to believe that our minds and our central nervous systems operated on an analog system.
As I said it's a mixture of both. Something I'd not been told before is that although the presence or otherwise of a neuron firing is digital (highs and lows of voltage), the body can vary the current, by varying the amount of Na and K ions it shunts around - that's kind've analog, and is amplitude modulated. It seems that the brain makes use of both mechanisms in seemingly random fashion.

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If I had to guess, I'd say the average human probably has gigabytes if not terabytes of memory
Yeah, maybe more But brains have a pretty lousy filing system and lose track of where they put those memories. You have stored in you brain every event, major or minor, that you have lived through since the age of about 2 1/2 (when long-term memory comes fully online) but can only remember the ones significant enough for your brain to highlight them.
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Old 16th October, 2001, 11:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by dimmreaper
Sounds to me like Phil needs a memory upgrade(as in RAM). Hmm . . . now here is a question: How many bytes of memory does Phil have now?

If I had to guess, I'd say the average human probably has gigabytes if not terabytes of memory, but what do I know.
It would be very hard to quantify that, in terms of raw numbers etc I would suspect we have very little memory capacity, probabally only a few hundred bytes for most people, some may have trained their brain to use more, like these people that can remember pi to 1000 decimal places or that can memorise a pack of cards etc..
but in terms of images and sounds etc.. we probabally put most computers to shame.
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  #29 (permalink)  
Old 16th October, 2001, 11:52 PM
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The problem is that our memory is setup in no way like that of a computer. The two are not directly comparable. In addition, while we may be able to store a great deal of info, retrieving this info is another matter. I mean, you can have no recollection of an event for years then a smell, or some other meaningless sensory input brings back a clear memory of a previous event. Our minds can also generate completely false memories that are seem just as real as what you're reading now. The mind is a terribly complex, non-linear electro-chemical computation machine. However, it will never be a 1's and 0's cruncher like current digital computers.
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Old 17th October, 2001, 01:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by SJAXKINGPIN
The problem is that our memory is setup in no way like that of a computer. The two are not directly comparable. In addition, while we may be able to store a great deal of info, retrieving this info is another matter. I mean, you can have no recollection of an event for years then a smell, or some other meaningless sensory input brings back a clear memory of a previous event. Our minds can also generate completely false memories that are seem just as real as what you're reading now. The mind is a terribly complex, non-linear electro-chemical computation machine. However, it will never be a 1's and 0's cruncher like current digital computers.

whoa!!!
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  #31 (permalink)  
Old 17th October, 2001, 02:29 PM
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Personally, what I'm more interested in is err... "bio circuit design". Forget the name of that scientist who paired an evolutionary alogorithm (evolve - test design - evolve ....) with a regular FPGA.

The end result? Portions of the chip were inactive, but when removed, compromised the performance of the active portion. Apparently, the active portion is utilizing some properties of the inactive portion. To this day, they still can't figure out the achieved design.

Hopefully, EEs are not out of a job
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  #32 (permalink)  
Old 17th October, 2001, 05:45 PM
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It was Adrian Thompson, back in '97.

His circuit took an FPGA chip and allowed it to "evolve" its own programming starting with a series of randomised programs, and asked it to perform a digital function ("please distinguish between oscillations at 1kHz and at 10kHz")

The FPGA was a 10×10 array of logic components, but 4000 or so generations later, of the 100 components available, only 32 were actually used. If he shorted out any of the non-active components, the circuit was quite happy, but removing them caused the circuit to fail.

The evolutionary "winner" also didn't move to other chips well - it apparently overspecialised to the tolerances of the components on that particular FPGA. One of the top 5 "runners up" did however transfer to two other chips quite happily.

What's confusing is: there're no logic components for "clock" on the chip, and not enough logic components on the chip to make a "ring oscillator", but still the unit distinguished reliably between two tones. It also appeared to process in analogue and digital simultaneously, much like the human brain.

I've got an article about this knocking round on a CD somewhere if you want me to post it...

EE's probably will never be out of a job - somebody has to be able to figure out what these algorithms have evolved, and do the safety assessment on them!
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  #33 (permalink)  
Old 17th October, 2001, 11:59 PM
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Thank you Kaitan for the specifics. Most of my brain's cache mem has been cleared since reading that article
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