May 29, 2012 | Post by: admin 1 Comments

The Acting Brain

Daniel Wolpert is a very interesting and engaging scientist whom studies the sensorimotor system.  Better said in his words:

Movement is the only way we have of interacting with the world, whether foraging for food or attracting a waiter’s attention. Indeed, all communication, including speech, sign language, gestures and writing, is mediated via the motor system. Taking this viewpoint, the purpose of the human brain is to use sensory signals to determine future actions. The goal of our lab is to understand the computational principles underlying human sensorimotor control.

My teacher had this to say in a recent email:

It is by neuroscientist, Daniel Wolpert, who postulates that the brain evolved, not to think or feel, but for movement!  So sixty years after Dr. Feldenkrais put forward the same thesis and based his life’s work on this premise, we have support and confirmation from science.  Dr. Wolpert’s talk is fantastic, but what really struck me was that still today, the brilliance of Moshe’s insights still shines brightly.

Better than words here are three fantastic videos on the importance and relevance of movement in relation to action:

http://www.charlierose.com/view/interview/10770

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=igpJeOkgfzw

http://www.ted.com/talks/daniel_wolpert_the_real_reason_for_brains.html

One Comment to The Acting Brain

  1. Swapna
    June 16, 2012 5:34 pm

    Great post, thank you Todd!May I add 2 things?> And, for any palaciurtr set of joint movements, there are nearly an infinite variety of possible muscular contractionsI don’t think so. This is a cute assumption by Daniel Wolpert, but faulty. It’s like saying, for mating, there are nearly an infinite variety of possible women/men on the planet. Mathematically correct, but far from real life.> NoiseRadiating the knee, last ATM by MF. There’s more to bodily signals than electricity running down some wires.> Daniel WolpertPeople who cannot give Functional Integration are cute, like Kitten. But by no means taken seriously on such questions. That’s like Mathematicians talking about Tennis, without having ever touched a tennis racket or played any sport at all.

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