The human brain contains 86 billion neurons, underlies all of humanity’s scientific and artistic endeavours, and has been repeatedly described as the most complex object in the known universe. By contrast, the MOS 6502 microchip contains 3510 transistors, runs Space Invaders, and wouldn’t even be the most complex object in my pocket. We know very little about how the brain works, but we understand the chip completely.Now, that's interesting, but it depends on an analogy that is increasingly questionable. Here's an article that argues that your brain does not process information, and is nothing like a computer.
So, Eric Jonas and Konrad Kording wondered, what would happen if they studied the chip in the style of neuroscientists? How would the approaches that are being used to study the complex squishy brain fare when used on a far simpler artificial processor? Could they re-discover everything we know about its transistors and logic gates, about how they process information and run simple video games? Forget attention, emotion, learning, memory, and creativity; using the techniques of neuroscience, could Jonas and Kording comprehend Donkey Kong?
No. They couldn’t. Not even close.
Neuroscience Can't Solve Donkey Kong
We hear increasingly confident claims from advocates of neuroscience that we shall soon understand how the brain works. How plausible are these claims? Someone thought of a test.
By Grim on Thursday, June 02, 2016