I’ve been working for several years on the premise that eventually neuroscience will find a relationship between visual patterns you experience in the world and an innate or embedded neural pattern in your mind. I have no desire to sound nutty. But as an artist I get a little leeway here. Researchers are describing their quest for mapping neural brain wiring….the connectome, much like mapping human DNA the human genome. The belief is that eventually with computer assisted analysis and electron microscopes, the billions of neural connections…the wiring of the mind can be mapped.
If the recall of a memory is stored in a series of neural connections, then the pattern and location of synaptic spikes could be captured, decoded and replayed. What if we eventually understand that the desire to see and anticipate patterns in the world….are not so different than the unique neural patterns in our mind. Memory and the feel of memory is captured as pattern in time. I think there is a relationship, and am excited to see the new images of Connectome mapping of the C. elegans (worm) and one neural muscle of a mouse.
Sebastian Seung’s TED talk is simple and easy to get…’I am my connectome’. His MIT course syllabus has much more detail of Connectomics reading. And his recent book… Connectome: how the brain’s wiring makes us who we are is an easy read.
One of the best visual descriptions is this short 3D reconstruction (click to see the video here).