Post(s) tagged with "brain"
We’ve written as lot about “brain malfunction” [aka “did my brain make me do it?”] defenses here but this is a new twist on the neurolaw question. Deep brain stimulation (“DBS”) is a well-accepted treatment for a number of serious and treatment resistant neurological conditions from Parkinson’s Disease to depression and obsessive-compulsive disorder. As effective as DBS can be, there are also concerns about how, in some patients, it changes one’s personality to cause “undesirable or even deviant behavior”. The behavioral/personality changes depend on the location of the deep brain stimulation (and the functions carried out by that portion of the brain).
So. You have a condition for which everyday treatment is ineffective or causes side-effects worse than the condition itself. Your doctor suggests a brain implant to offer deep brain stimulation (DBS). You are unfortunately, one of those for whom DBS creates behavioral reactions and you do something illegal. Are you responsible? Or is it your brain implant? […]
The article is very complex and the ideas in it are provocative. We cannot do justice to the questions raised by these writers in a brief blog post. It’s a very serious question.
"When you agree to a cutting-edge treatment and you are informed that for some people, behavioral changes may occur, do you thereby accept responsibility for any actions you take under the influence of that treatment?
"Or, since the behavior is completely different than anything you have previously displayed and is thus believed due to the treatment (which can be shut off) is it fair to deny responsibility?
"And if you encounter aberrant behavioral effects but decide to not shut off the DBS because you appreciate the ways in which it helps you function, are you then more responsible for any illegal act you committed since you are choosing to continue down the same path?"
Yes. This is a new question. Not, “did my brain make me do it?” but “did my brain implant make me do it?”. Ultimately, however, the larger question remains the same. Where does our personal responsibility end?
A slightly newer twist but I agree that it is the same problem of individual responsibility which is deconstructed into it’s functional components.
WHY are we thinking so much about thinking these days? Near the top of best-seller lists around the country, you’ll find Jonah Lehrer’s “Imagine: How Creativity Works,” followed by Charles Duhigg’s book “The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business,” and somewhere in the middle, where it’s held its ground for several months, Daniel Kahneman’s “Thinking, Fast and Slow.” Recently arrived is “Subliminal: How Your Unconscious Mind Rules Your Behavior,” by Leonard Mlodinow.
It’s the invasion of the Can’t-Help-Yourself books.
The world’s first computerised map of the brain was released yesterday by scientists at the Allen Institute for Brain Science, in Seattle, Washington, after more than four years of cutting-edge research. The Human Brain Atlas is an interactive research tool that will help scientists to understand how the brain works and aid new discoveries in disease and treatments.
Maps like these have limitless potential in drug discovery and human genetics and will no doubt be an essential step forward in the fight against disease.
ScienceDaily (Mar. 25, 2011) — Researchers at the Institute for Logic, Language and Computation (ILLC) of the University of Amsterdam have discovered a universal property of musical scales. Until now it was assumed that the only thing scales throughout the world have in common is the octave. The many hundreds of scales, however, seem to possess a deeper commonality: if their tones are compared in a two- or three-dimensional way by means of a coordinate system, they form convex or star-convex structures. Convex structures are patterns without indentations or holes, such as a circle, square or oval.This could be really interesting since we don’t know very much about the properties of music. Music seems to be one universal key to understand the fundamental properties of the human brain.
Adults with little internet experience show changes in their brain activity after just one week online, a new study finds.
The results suggest Internet training can stimulate neural activation patterns and could potentially enhance brain function and cognition in older adults.
Seen at Live Science
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P A Martin Börjesson
To be able to see the future emerge we have to throw a wide net to catch the weak signals. In this tumble I collect things I find valuable for my work as scenario planner, strategist and futurist - for more info about me go to www.futuramb.se.
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