Tag Archives: Brain Physiology

Weber’s Law

Weber’s Law expresses a general relationship between an initial stimulus, a quantity or intensity, and the increased stimulus required for a change in the stimulus to be detected. The task is to tell apart, or discriminate, two things that differ … Continue reading

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Baboon Counting Algorithms

Human counting can be thought of as a kind of condition controlled logic where counters increment a sequence of labels “one, two, three four…” until some condition is met. (Cantlon et al. 2015) The diagram below illustrates some, but not all, … Continue reading

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Jevons’es Data

In 1871 the early economist and logician William Stanley Jevons published an article in Nature “The Power of Numerical Discrimination” (Jevons 1871) According to Jevons, Sir William Hamilton had clearly stated the problem: “Assuming that the mind is not limited to … Continue reading

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Shooting Baboons: A Story

If a man with a gun goes to shoot baboons near the edge of a forest, the baboons will see him coming, hide in the forest and not come out until he is seen to go away. If the first … Continue reading

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Beau Geste Hypothesis

In the 1924 book Beau Geste, and the many film versions that followed it, the climax of the action takes place in the desert at Fort Zinderneuf where members of the French Foreign Legion are attempting to hold off an Arab  attack. … Continue reading

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Counting Cormorants

As a small child I have a vivid memory of a picture in a Wonder Book that showed cormorants  being used by Chinese fishermen. Each bird having a ring round its neck that prevented it eating the fish it caught. … Continue reading

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Otto Koehler

Numerical Competence in Animals The German zoologist Otto Koehler (1889-1974) was the first scientist to convincingly demonstrate numerical competence in animals. The first part of this post is based upon a panel from Counting on neurons: the neurobiology of numerical competence” (Nieder … Continue reading

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