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Simultaneously measuring the activities of all neurons in a mammalian brain at millisecond resolution is a challenge beyond the limits of existing techniques in neuroscience. Entirely new approaches may be required, motivating an analysis of the fundamental physical constraints on the problem. We outline the physical principles governing brain activity(More)
A fundamental challenge for the nervous system is to encode signals spanning many orders of magnitude with neurons of limited bandwidth. To meet this challenge, perceptual systems use gain control. However, whether the motor system uses an analogous mechanism is essentially unknown. Neuromodulators, such as serotonin, are prime candidates for gain control(More)
To record from a given neuron, a recording technology must be able to separate the activity of that neuron from the activity of its neighbors. Here, we develop a Fisher information based framework to determine the conditions under which this is feasible for a given technology. This framework combines measurable point spread functions with measurable noise(More)
Adoption of innovations, whether new ideas, technologies, or products, is crucially important to knowledge societies. The landmark studies of adoption dealt with innovations having great societal impact (such as antibiotics or hybrid crops) but where determining the utility of the innovation was straightforward (such as fewer side effects or greater yield).(More)
While attentional effects in visual selection tasks have traditionally been assigned "top-down" or "bottom-up" origins, more recently it has been proposed that there are three major factors affecting visual selection: (1) physical salience, (2) current goals and (3) selection history. Here, we look further into selection history by investigating Priming of(More)
Current high-resolution imaging techniques require an intact sample that preserves spatial relationships. We here present a novel approach, "puzzle imaging," that allows imaging a spatially scrambled sample. This technique takes many spatially disordered samples, and then pieces them back together using local properties embedded within the sample. We show(More)
A molecular device that records time-varying signals would enable new approaches in neuroscience. We have recently proposed such a device, termed a "molecular ticker tape", in which an engineered DNA polymerase (DNAP) writes time-varying signals into DNA in the form of nucleotide misincorporation patterns. Here, we define a theoretical framework quantifying(More)
There is a strong emphasis on developing novel neuroscience technologies, in particular on recording from more neurons. There has thus been increasing discussion about how to analyze the resulting big datasets. What has received less attention is that over the last 30 years, papers in neuroscience have progressively integrated more approaches, such as(More)
When we search for visual objects, the features of those objects bias our attention across the visual landscape (feature-based attention). The brain uses these top-down cues to select eye movement targets (spatial selection). The frontal eye field (FEF) is a prefrontal brain region implicated in selecting eye movements and is thought to reflect(More)
When a saccade is expected to result in a reward, both neural activity in oculomotor areas and the saccade itself (e.g., its vigor and latency) are altered (compared with when no reward is expected). As such, it is unclear whether the correlations of neural activity with reward indicate a representation of reward beyond a movement representation; the(More)