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Dopamine, a neurochemical often associated with reward behavior, also seems to help organize precisely when the brain initiates movements. It’s the latest revelation about the power of neuromodulators.
Familiar categories of mental functions such as perception, memory and attention reflect our experience of ourselves, but they are misleading about how the brain works. More revealing approaches are emerging.
Studies of sleep are usually neurological. But some of nature’s simplest animals suggest that sleep evolved for metabolic reasons, long before brains even existed.
The nervous systems of foraging and predatory animals may prompt them to move along a special kind of random path called a Lévy walk to find food efficiently when no clues are available.
Machine learning and deep neural networks can capture and analyze the “language” of animal behavior in ways that go beyond what’s humanly possible.
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