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Spark Blog: How Does Your Brain React to Gibberish?

The scientists in Oregon wanted to see how brains react to mistakes in grammar, even when the listener isn’t fluent in the language being spoken!

Sep 10th, 2008 | 8 comments

In the News

In the News: European Magpie: No Bird Brain

Until recently only great apes and some other big-brained mammals were thought capable of passing the “mirror test.” Enter the European magpie.

Sep 9th, 2008 | 4 comments

In the News

In the News: Did Early Europeans Interbreed with Neanderthals?

There were thousands of years that Neanderthals and Homo sapiens inhabited the same regions in Europe. How much did these groups intermingle?

Sep 5th, 2008 | Comments Off

Spark Blog: Inside Alan Alda’s Brain

In Oregon, we peered with both an MRI and a brain wave monitor into Alan’s brain to find out how he employs it for language and tool use.

Aug 27th, 2008 | 10 comments

In the News

In the News: Why Your Voice Is Quieter Than an Orangutan’s

All great apes, including humans, have vocal tract air sacs that they use to call out loud. Ours have evolved to be smaller than the other apes’, leaving them with louder voices.

Aug 25th, 2008 | Comments Off

Spark Blog: Video: Why I Volunteer to Have My Brain Scanned

Brian Moore is one of the people who has volunteered a couple of times for Helen Neville’s language fMRI studies at the University of Oregon. Find out why in this video clip.

Aug 19th, 2008 | 3 comments

In the News

In the News: Rethinking the Boundaries of “Human Rights”

There are big differences between apes and humans, but we do share the majority of our DNA and other characteristics. Should some "human rights" extend to our great ape cousins?

Aug 16th, 2008 | Comments Off

In the News

In the News: Why We Attribute Human Qualities to Machines

Now researchers observe that the more "human" a robot seems, the more active are the brain regions that think about the intentions and desires of others -- even if that other is a machine.

Aug 13th, 2008 | 1 comment

Spark Blog: Shooting MRI Scenes — It’s Magnetic!

We started in the morning with what turned into a rather chaotic fMRI scene -- six people in two locations. And the magnetism of the equipment made filming complicated.

Aug 12th, 2008 | 1 comment

In the News

Can Apes Really Talk?

This video presents a reporter's visit to the Great Ape Trust, where apes communicate with researchers with a lexigram. But is this really language?

Aug 6th, 2008 | Comments Off
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