Diary of a Narcissistic Misanthrope


If I Hate You More Than Myself We’ve Got A Problem

I like to think I’m an acquired taste, like old whiskey or arsenic in your tea

So this is usually the part where pretension comes out in full and beautiful force but this is going to be the first time in a long time I'm going to be honest. My name is Clarence (Hello), born in 1988, i got my undergrad degree in Sociology (with a concentration in Women's Studies) and I'm utterly terrified. I'm scared of everything, people, my own feelings and sometimes even being but really there's nothing much to be done about that despite what I say. And I will say a lot about how my life has no meaning and i want to die (which is the majority of the time) but sometimes it seems like life is worth living for and everything in it is a spectacular explosion of awe inspiring wonder (which is usually a three week span some time in March). If it seems odd to read think what it might be like living it. So to get off the topic of terror I prefer stories. I like to read them, I love to live in them and there is nothing better to me than a story so I guess this blog is a story mostly about me. Don't bother trying to find themes, connection or messages in what I post cause there really aren't any (unless they are completely accidental).

This blog is a story about what I find, what I feel and what I think so to that end I collect things to post or reblog. Its not meant to be anything truly meaningful or interconnected, just fun (mostly fun for me if you don't like it you can fuck right off) This is collection of all the the weird and interesting links from around the net that I find, comics, technology, comedy, current events, sociology, general geek/nerd interest, and more weird stuff (seriously its become about 65% clusterfuck of the strange stuff which is also why I don't feel bad about continuing to name it Strange World). I think it makes for the closest representation to who I am that I've ever done and it just keeps growing bigger which is most of the fun. And don't be disturbed if i in several post warn about my soon to happen suicide (I have yet to actually do it so we're all probably safe for a few more years). Please feel free to talk to me and don't mind the depressive tone i will probably be using. I like to think I'm somewhat fun if also a complete idiot.

Please feel free to talk to me by letter in my ask or by following me on other social networks but please just throw me a message about who you are so I accept the request I have no patients for spamming (send me an ask here if you want to be a friend on Steam.

By the By it goes without saying you should make sure children don't read most of this (I like swearing and naked women of all shapes, colors and sizes).
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Posts tagged "neuroscience"
The brain’s impressively accurate internal clock allows us to detect the passage of time, a skill essential for many critical daily functions. Without the ability to track elapsed time, our morning shower could continue indefinitely. … Neuroscientists believe that we have distinct neural systems for processing different types of time, for example, to maintain a circadian rhythm, to control the timing of fine body movements, and for conscious awareness of time passage. Until recently, most neuroscientists believed that this latter type of temporal processing – the kind that alerts you when you’ve lingered over breakfast for too long – is supported by a single brain system. However, emerging research indicates that the model of a single neural clock might be too simplistic. A new study … reveals that the brain may in fact have a second method for sensing elapsed time. What’s more, the authors propose that this second internal clock not only works in parallel with our primary neural clock, but may even compete with it.
jtotheizzoe:

Mapping a Living Brain, Neuron by Neuron
A brain, along with all of the thoughts, decisions and consciousness that it brings with it, is nothing more than the sum of its parts. But it is precisely the sum of those parts that makes a brain more than just a pile of neurons and gray goo. Mapping the complex networks of the brain in space and time will be the key to figuring out how it works.
Thanks to some breakthrough work in a fish, we may be getting closer. HHMI scientists have mapped the activity of a zebrafish brain down to the individual neuron in real time! A zebrafish brain contains 100,000 times fewer neurons than our own, but techniques like this will make the Obama administration’s ambitious (and slightly controversial) human Brain Activity Map Project possible. Of course, mapping the activity of a brain isn’t the same as knowing what that activity means, but it’s hard to navigate anything without a detailed map. And when it comes to the brain, a static map is pretty useless. Seeing how signals change over time at a single-cell level is what it will take to turn flashing cells into an idea of what makes the brain tick. 
This isn’t our first glance at what “fish thoughts” look like, but it’s definitely the most complete, and the most completely awesome. Check out more great coverage, plus complete videos of the blinking brain, at io9.
I really want to know what this zebrafish was thinking about that made its whole brain light up. Maybe “Oh man, I’m gonna be so famous on the internet after this!!”

jtotheizzoe:

Mapping a Living Brain, Neuron by Neuron

A brain, along with all of the thoughts, decisions and consciousness that it brings with it, is nothing more than the sum of its parts. But it is precisely the sum of those parts that makes a brain more than just a pile of neurons and gray goo. Mapping the complex networks of the brain in space and time will be the key to figuring out how it works.

Thanks to some breakthrough work in a fish, we may be getting closer. HHMI scientists have mapped the activity of a zebrafish brain down to the individual neuron in real time! A zebrafish brain contains 100,000 times fewer neurons than our own, but techniques like this will make the Obama administration’s ambitious (and slightly controversial) human Brain Activity Map Project possible. Of course, mapping the activity of a brain isn’t the same as knowing what that activity means, but it’s hard to navigate anything without a detailed map. And when it comes to the brain, a static map is pretty useless. Seeing how signals change over time at a single-cell level is what it will take to turn flashing cells into an idea of what makes the brain tick. 

This isn’t our first glance at what “fish thoughts” look like, but it’s definitely the most complete, and the most completely awesome. Check out more great coverage, plus complete videos of the blinking brain, at io9.

I really want to know what this zebrafish was thinking about that made its whole brain light up. Maybe “Oh man, I’m gonna be so famous on the internet after this!!

scinerds:

Three Radical New Brain-Mapping Tools Obama’s Plan Could Deliver

The Obama administration wants to make a huge investment in mapping the human brain, according to The New York Times. How can they get the most bang for their buck? We have details on three future technologies that are being eyed by the scientists behind the bold proposal.

The U.S. already has one big brain-mapping effort under way, the Human Connectome Project, which aims to map the connections between regions of the human brain. The new project would go beyond this static depiction and map the activity of individual neurons in real time.

“All the really interesting features of the brain — language, perception, cognition, the mind — emerge from collections of neurons interacting with each other in ways we don’t understand,” said neuroscientist John Donoghue of Brown University, one of the architects of the proposed project. It’s those interactions, the electrochemical blips coursing through networks of interconnected neurons, that the new Brain Activity Map project aims to capture.

The Connectome project focuses mostly on static images of the brain. Although it does include some measures of brain activity, the fMRI scans it will use provide a view that’s something like that of a city seen from an airplane window. What the scientists behind the proposed Brain Activity Map want instead are detailed street maps with real-time traffic info. Ideally, they want to record every blip of every neuron in a network of thousands, or even millions.

The scientists hope they’ll get as much as $3 billion over the next decade to build a new set of dream tools for studying how the human brain works when it’s healthy and what goes wrong in disorders like epilepsy and Alzheimer’s disease. Here are three ideas they’ve discussed, all in various stages of development.

“Sure, they sound far-fetched,” Donoghue said. “But we’re on the cusp of being able to do them.”

Continue..

‘Different kind of stem cell’ possesses attributes favoring regenerative medicine

A research team at Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center say the new and powerful cells they first created in the laboratory a year ago constitute a new stem-like state of adult epithelial cells. They say these cells have attributes that may make regenerative medicine truly possible.

In the November 19 online early edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), they report that these new stem-like cells do not express the same genes as embryonic stem cells and induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) do. That explains why they don’t produce tumors when they grow in the laboratory, as the other stem cells do, and why they are stable, producing the kind of cells researchers want them to.

“These seem to be exactly the kind of cells that we need to make regenerative medicine a reality,” says the study’s senior investigator, chairman of the department of pathology at Georgetown Lombardi, a part of Georgetown University Medical Center.

This study is a continuation of work that led to a breakthrough in December 2011 when Schlegel and his colleagues demonstrated that he and his team had designed a laboratory technique that keep both normal as well as cancer cells alive indefinitely — which previously had not been possible.

They had discovered that adding two different substances to these cells (a Rho kinase inhibitor and fibroblast feeder cells) pushes them to morph into stem-like cells that stay alive indefinitely. When the two substances are withdrawn from the cells, they revert back to the type of cell that they once were. They dubbed these cells conditionally reprogrammed cells (CRCs).

(via thescienceofreality)

Aside from overt ethnic discrimination, the real and lasting tragedy of IQ and other intelligence tests was the message they sent to every individual—including the students who scored well. That message was: your intelligence is something you were given, not something you’ve earned.

jtotheizzoe:

Brain scans + fMRI: What are we seeing and what are we missing?

Two new studies suggest that fMRI studies, the brain activity  scans that give us those “thermal blob” images we are so used to, might be the equivalent of cracking an egg with a sledgehammer. You’ll see an effect, but it’s kind of a brute force blunt object, considering the detail of the job.

From Neuroskeptic:

As an analogy, suppose that all you knew about your neighbours was from the noises that you heard through the wall. The shouts and screams would be loud enough to reach your eyes; the normal conversations and whispers wouldn’t. If you concluded that all your neighbours did was shout, not talk, you’d get a misleading picture of their relationship.

That’s the bad news. On the other hand, fMRI is clearly more powerful than most neuroscientists have realized, and this holds out hope for cracking some of the trickiest questions facing the field in the future, with larger studies and more sensitive techniques

The brain is a 1.5 kilogram mass of jelly, the consistency of tofu, you can hold it in the palm of your hand, yet it can contemplate the vastness of space and time, the meaning of infinity and the meaning of existence. It can ask questions about who am I, where do I come from, questions about love and beauty, aesthetics, and art, and all these questions arising from this lump of jelly. It is truly the greatest of mysteries. —Neuroscientist V.S. Ramachandran on unlocking the secrets of consciousness and behavioral neurology (Edge.org, Feb. 21, 2012)

Much of the research confirms things we’ve always suspected. For example, in general people who are in good romantic relationships are happier than those who aren’t. Healthy people are happier than sick people. People who participate in their churches are happier than those who don’t. Rich people are happier than poor people. And so on.

That said, there have been some surprises. For example, while all these things do make people happier, it’s astonishing how little any one of them matters. Yes, a new house or a new spouse will make you happier, but not much and not for long. As it turns out, people are not very good at predicting what will make them happy and how long that happiness will last. They expect positive events to make them much happier than those events actually do, and they expect negative events to make them unhappier than they actually do.

Harvard Business Review interviews Daniel Gilbert, author of Stumbling on Happiness. (via curiositycounts)

(via jtotheizzoe)

At carboncopies.org, we strive to take this research a step further: to bring about and nurture projects that are crucial to achieving substrate-independent minds (SIM). That is, enable minds to operate on many different hardware platforms — not just a neural substrate.

Randal A. Koene

we still need our bodies…

(via rilah)

(via hanacarpenter)

The attributes that we possess […] are not attributes of the brain, any more than the attributes of our brains are our attributes. It is plainly false that we are ‘no more than the behavior of a vast assembly of nerve cells (and other cells) and the molecules associated with them’. What is tautologically true is that we do not consist of any more cells that the vast assembly of nerve and other cells of which we – living human beings –actually consists. But we are no more just a collection of cells (nerve cells or otherwise) than a painting is just a collection of pigments or brush strokes, a novel just a collection of words, or a society just a collection of people – although what more there is to a painting than mere pigments is not more pigments, what more there is to a novel than mere words is not more words, and more there is to a society than mere people is not more people.

Philosophical Foundations of Neuroscience by Bennett and Hacker

God I love this book.

(via ryanjohnn)

(via ryanjohnn-deactivated20111121-d)