Semantic Atlas of the Brain


Wissenschaftler haben eine Brain-Map erstellt, die zeigt, welche Worte welche Areale des Gehirns aktivieren. Die Karte gibt's auch als WebGL-3D-Klickschnickschnack zum Rumspielen, den Screenshot oben habe ich aus Gründen invertiert. Hier das Paper: Natural speech reveals the semantic maps that tile human cerebral cortex, Website der UC Berkley zur Studie. (via MeFi)

And then there's this bit: „The idea of murder is represented a lot in the brain“. Yay, brains are full of killing!

To create the atlas, the scientists recorded people’s brain activity while they listened to stories read out on The Moth Radio Hour, a US radio show. They then matched the transcripts of the stories with the brain activity data to show how groups of related words triggered neural responses in 50,000 to 80,000 pea-sized spots all over the cerebral cortex. […]

The atlas shows how words and related terms exercise the same regions of the brain. For example, on the left-hand side of the brain, above the ear, is one of the tiny regions that represents the word “victim”. The same region responds to “killed”, “convicted”, “murdered” and “confessed”. On the brain’s right-hand side, near the top of the head, is one of the brain spots activated by family terms: “wife”, “husband”, “children”, “parents”. […]

Strikingly, the brain atlases were similar for all the participants, suggesting that their brains organised the meanings of words in the same way. The scientists only scanned five men and two women, however. All are native English speakers, and two are authors of the study published in Nature. It is highly possible that people from different backgrounds and cultures will have different semantic brain atlases.