MIT discovers the location of memories: Individual neurons

Sebastian Anthony, Extreme Tech, Oct 21, 2015
Commentary by Stephen Downes
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This is reported with all the breathless urgency of an MIT press release announcing something discovered for the first time, but though it's a significant finding it restates what others have been saying for a long time (and just for fun, the headline also gets it wrong). Here's what is said, exactly: "By triggering a small cluster of neurons, the researchers were able to force the subject to recall a specific memory. By removing these neurons, the subject would lose that memory" (note that a "cluster" is not an "individual neuron". And note that they have shown that these neurons are necessary for a specific memory (for that particular brain), not that they are sufficient. But yes: "we finally have proof that memories (engrams, in neuropsychology speak) are physical rather than conceptual."

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