Category Archives: the brain

Ep 220: Wagging tongues over taste



Wagging tongues over taste

Researching this episode made me so hungry! Today, phil and I talk about your tongue, a berry that makes sour things sweet, mice in mid yum, and your brain and the sense of taste.
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Ep 219: Balance



Balance

You hardly notice it unless something goes wrong, but your sense of balance relies on most of your other senses to work, and uses all sorts of interesting bits of your interesting brain. Along with sleeping birds, bionic men, and beer bottles, Phil and I talk about your sense of balance.
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Ep 218: Touching on touch



Touching on touch

Throughout your body, you have nerves. These send signals about the world through your spinal cord, and into your brain. More than just what you feel, your sense of touch includes temperature, pressure, the position of your body, and a bit about what your internal organs are up to today. We continue our look at your senses and your brain with an episode that touches on touch.
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Ep 217: Take a look at looking



Take a look at looking

Your sense of vision is arguably the most complicated sense you have. Estimates range from one half, to as much as two thirds of your brain dedicated to using light to make sense of your world. From the way your eyes turn light into nerve impulses, to different bits of the brain that process them, we take a close look at looking.
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Ep 216: the stuff between your ears, including the ears



the stuff between your ears, including the ears

From the shape of your ears to bits of your brain, and just a little bit about fish for some reason, have a listen to how we listen.
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Ep 215: What is a cortex?



What is a cortex?

From the Latin word for tree bark, “cortex” refers to the outer most layer of an organ. In the brain, the outer most layer is made of several layers of neurons. That’s true in the cerebellum, in the cerebellar cortex; and the cerebrum, in the better known cerebral cortex. Today, we take a look at how these separate areas of cortex work together, and talk about the six layers of your neocortex.
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ep 214: What’s this “cerebellum” thing for?



What’s this “cerebellum” thing for?

It’s sitting underneath your cerebrum, this odd bulge behind the brainstem. Only ten percent of your brains total volume, it has more than 75 percent of the neurons. What is the cerebellum, and what does it use all those neurons for?
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Ep 213: Reverse engineering the brain… ish



Reverse engineering the brain… ish

Let’s see… How does this “brain” thing work exactly? Maybe we could build something brain-like, something that would act as though it has a mind. Hmmm… In a conversation that rambles through blind cavefish, dancing pigeons, Alaskan turtles, cribbage, and potato chips, Phil and I talk about reverse engineering the human brain. Bwa ha ha!
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Ep 212: A network of networks



A network of networks

It’s an old part of your brain, but still very complicated. With far too much to cover in one episode, Phil and I hit a few highlights of your reticular formation. From our old friend the substantia nigra; to the raphe nuclei acting as a source of serotonin; to our new friend, the pedunculopontine nucleus, which I never did pronounce right; we take a closer look at the network of networks that is your reticular formation.
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Ep 211: Black and blue brain bits



Black and blue brain bits

Last week, Phil had questions. This week, we try to answer them. We also take a closer look at areas of the brain that have pigment in their neurons, and try to figure out what that pigment is there for.
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