Physiological Perception Filters
One profound advantage chaos may confer on the brain is that chaotic systems continually produce novel activity patterns. We propose that such patterns are crucial to the development of nerve cell assemblies that differ from established assemblies. More generally, the ability to create activity patterns I may underlie the brain's ability to generate insight and the "trials" of trial and-error problem solving.
We have found widespread, apparently chaotic behaviour in other parts of the brain. That finding does not necessarily imply that other sensory systems operate as the olfactory system does. However, we think they do. Indeed, we and other investigators have documented gamma bursts across large cortical regions involved in recognizing visual images. As in the olfactory system, familiar visual stimuli are associated with specific amplitude maps of common carrier waves. I predict that when people examine drawings in which foreground and background are ambiguous, so that perception alternates between two images, the amplitude maps will be found to alternate as well.
I begin to envision the general dynamics of perception. The brain seeks information, mainly by directing an individual to look, listen and sniff. The search results from self-organizing activity in the limbic system (a part of the brain that includes the entorhinal cortex and is thought to be involved in emotion and memory), which funnels a search command to the motor systems. As the motor command is transmitted, the limbic system issues what is called a reafference message, alerting all the sensory systems to prepare to respond to new information.
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