“More Perfect Than We Think”
William Bialek, PhD, John Archibald Wheeler/Battelle Professor in Physics, Princeton University
“From its ability to appreciate beauty, to the reassembly of distant childhood memories, to our almost unthinking ability to respond to the unexpected, is our brain really “doing a good job” at solving the problems we confront as we move through the world? Has evolution granted us a rich inheritance of tools, or saddled us with artifacts of a distant past, limiting our ability to solve new problems? Many other animals, from insects to our fellow primates, do many equally remarkable things, but several examples will be presented allowing us to see how the human brain solves problems in an essentially perfect way — no machine operating under the same physical constraints could do better. Examining what is common among the problems that the brain is good at solving begins to suggest a more general principle that may be at work”.
This free lecture series by the College of Science started on January 27 and ends tonight. My husband and I have tried to attend as many of these as time permited.
I was especially fascinated by the February 10th talk on the history of Neurosurgery by Dr. G. Michael Lemole, Jr. , one of the doctors who helped save Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords’ life on January 8, 2011.
More at their website where you can view the lectures online that you missed: https://cos.arizona.edu/connections/evolving-brain.
Arrive early as these lectures are very popular and Centennial Hall fills up by 6:45 p.m.