Discover | April 30th, 2016

Words On The Brain: A Semantic Map of the Cortex

In a new Nature paper, Berkely neuroscientists Alexander G. Huth and colleagues present a ‘semantic atlas’ of the human brain. Huth et al. have mapped which brain areas respond to words, according to the semantics (meanings) of each word. It turns out that these maps are highly similar across individuals – which could have implications for ‘mind reading’ […]

SF Gate | April 28th, 2016

New brain research offers hope for those who have lost speech

As humans interpret the meaning of the words they’re hearing, they must use a wide variety of brain cells — and for the first time, scientists at UC Berkeley have mapped the brain’s inner regions where it all happens. People’s ability to link words with their meanings lies at the most basic level of brain […]

Los Angeles Times | April 28th, 2016

How the ‘Moth Radio Hour’ helped scientists map out meaning in the brain

This is your brain on stories. By tracking the blood flow in people’s brains as they listened to a storytelling radio show, scientists at UC Berkeley have mapped out where the meanings associated with basic words are encoded in the cortex, creating the first semantic atlas of the brain. The findings, described in the journal […]

The New York Times | April 28th, 2016

This Is Your Brain on Podcasts

Listening to music may make the daily commute tolerable, but streaming a story through the headphones can make it disappear. You were home; now you’re at your desk: What happened? Storytelling happened, and now scientists have mapped the experience of listening to podcasts, specifically “The Moth Radio Hour,” using a scanner to track brain activity. […]

Berkeley Neuroscience News | April 28th, 2016

Detailed Map of Language Representation in Human Brain

In their paper published in Nature today, HWNI faculty members Tom Griffiths, Frederic Theunissen, Jack Gallant and co-authors describe a data-driven approach to map language representation across the human cortex. They were able to determine what regions of the cortex are active during language processing, and to identify smaller regions that specifically respond to a set of […]

The Wall Street Journal | April 27th, 2016

The Human Brain as a Word Cloud, on a Shared Drive

The human brain is a living word cloud, turning spoken language into intricate neural patterns of meaning that we all appear to share, new research suggests. In research reported Wednesday in Nature, neuroscientists at the University of California at Berkeley created a comprehensive atlas of these patterns, showing how shades of meaning in natural speech […]

Berkeley News | April 27th, 2016

Scientists map brain’s thesaurus to help decode inner thoughts

What if a map of the brain could help us decode people’s inner thoughts? UC Berkeley scientists have taken a step in that direction by building a “semantic atlas” that shows in vivid colors and multiple dimensions how the human brain organizes language. The atlas identifies brain areas that respond to words that have similar meanings. […]

Berkeley News | April 27th, 2016

Neurophysiologist and philosopher Walter Freeman dies at 89

Walter Jackson Freeman III, a neuroscientist and philosopher known for his pioneering work on how the brain generates our perception of the world, died Sunday, April 24, at his home in Berkeley. He was 89. A professor emeritus of molecular and cell biology at the University of California, Berkeley, Freeman died from pulmonary fibrosis of […]

Berkeley News | April 26th, 2016

Paralyzed by indecision? Forget therapy. You need an algorithm

Information overload and “fear of missing out” may rank among the biggest contributors to chronic indecision. But help is at hand. A new book by Tom Griffiths, a UC Berkeley cognitive scientist, and acclaimed author and computer scientist Brian Christian combines the best of computer science and human intuition to head off an epidemic of too […]

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