I write a regular column for Scientific American MIND called Consciousness Redux. In each essay, I comment on a recent experimental or theoretical development that is important to help ups understand the neuronal roots of the conscious mind. Most columns have a decided neurobiological point-of-view.
Scientists are beginning to unravel a mystery that has long vexed philosophers
Brain imaging can establish a two-way lifeline to some severely brain-damaged patients.
The bits and pieces of the brain that render us conscious reside in places few suspected.
During microsleep, the entire brain nods off so briefly that we often don't notice it. Now research shows that individual neurons in the brain can slumber, too, especially when we feel sleep-deprived.
Sleep and wakefulness are not all-or-none states of mind. When we sleep, one side of our brain can be awake.
As a leading go player falls to a machine, artificial intelligence takes a decisive step on the road to overtaking the natural variety.
From Aristotle to Watson, our views on mind, brain and soul have evolved. A brilliant new book adds perspective.
A long-forgotten epidemic teaches us about the science of slumber.
A recent discovery proves embarrassing to any notion of humanity’s innate superiority.
The search to understand how artificial neural networks process images yields insights and a trippy brand of beauty.
Artificial intelligence is coming of age and challenging our belief that being smart and being conscious go hand-in-hand.
Intuition is rooted in the brain’s uncanny ability to rapidly know the answer without knowing why.
Can you guess who they are?
What happens in the brain when you see—really “see”—a friend’s smile or scowl.
Could the claustrum--a thin, enigmatic layer of nerve cells--be a key component of the networks generating conscious experience?
The movie Her makes a compelling case for a computer program with feelings. Is that actually possible?
What is consciousness? Global Neuronal Workspace argues that consciousness arises when information is broadcast throughout the brain.
Panpsychism, the ancient doctrine that consciousness is universal, offers some lessons in how to think about subjective experience today.
A new study finds a possible brain signature of consciousness in infants as young as five months.
An encounter with His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the scientific study of meditation.
An electromagnetic gadget to measure the level of consciousness.
Silicon eyes to help people with deteriorating vision are around the corner.
What can we learn about consciousness from anesthetized patients?.
New research sheds lights - literally - on recall mechanisms.
To the great surprise of many, psilocybin, a potent psychedelic, reduces brain activity.
Psychology and functional brain imaging disentangle two closely related processes, attention and consciousness.
Functional MRI can peer inside your brain and watch you watching a YouTube clip.
Cognitive psychology ius mapping the capabilities we are unaware we possess.
Using optical and genetic technqiues, neuroscientists have identified an "on/off" switch for aggression in the brain.
Some protozoa infect the brain of their host, shaping its behavior in ways most suited to the pathogen, even if it leads to the suicide of the host.
An advanced brain-machine interface enables patients to control individual nerve cells deep inside their own brain.
The ways in which brains differ from one another shows up in the way their owners perceive the world.
Although we rarely remember our nighttime reveries, they may hold the key to consciousness.
What stays with us, and what we forget, depends in part on how well our neurons keep time.
When you are facing a tricky task, your view of the world may not be as accurate as you think.
Genetic intervention cures color blindness in monkeys.
A combination of genetic and optics gives brain scientists an unprecedented ability to dissect the circuits of the mind.
Direct stimulation of the arousal centers in patients may restore awareness.
Neurosurgeons evoke an intention to act.
In the womb, at birth or during early childhood??
Is complexity the secret to sentience, to a panpsychic view of consciousness?
Suppression and dissociation, two psychoanalytic defense mechanisms, are now studied by modern neuroscience.
One sign of progress in unraveling the mind-body problem is the development of new and ingenious ways to measure consciousness.
Bees display a remarkable range of talentsabilities that in a mammal such as a dog we would associate with consciousness.
Clever experiments reveal how unconscious mechanisms can affect our brain and our behavior.