What are the characteristics of achieving insight into a problem?
-insight is a process: -first impasse, looking at it, what is it? -suddenly you get it, it feels like something, element of certainty= represents a pattern of brain activity
What were the two examples of insight we discussed?
-the largest prime number= proof by contradiction -the different types of infinity (real numbers)
What are the two examples of elemental insight-related problem solving?
-The compound remote associate problems (CRAP) = what word can be joined to the words and makes sense -Bongard sets= classification problems, look for what makes the set a set
Where does classification happen in the brain?
middle of the temmporal lobe= classification structures
How to determine brain activity during problem solving?
-EEG as you can get very good temporal resolution
What were the alpha and gamma signatures of the insight and non insight group(these just told the result)?
-there is a difference in the alpha band between the insight and non insight group -small difference in alpha activity -gamma range = the more coherent brain wide pattern -big difference at around the time people came up with the soution
What does the gamma activity signify in problem solving?
-gamma activity when it happens= is association of different parts of the brain
What are the conditions for insight?
-so when insight: 1.have the analytical phase 2.then if you relax and defocus, and restrategise= that is associated with the possibility of coming up with a solution= the gamma burst= gets more synchronous with other parts of the brain -all of this can be monitored with EEG, the Eureka moment is associated with gamma activity= controversial
What is meant by top down executive control?
--preconceptions, the mental model we have= top down processing -conscious thought is a subset of cognitive activity: the brain knows more than it lets us know -when you have some idea what you are looking for much easier -the dalmatian picture
What is gesture use like in humans?
when talking with gestures the same part of brain lights up as when using tools -tool use, gesture and language seem in some way interrelated-images of tools but not animals or people activate language areas in people
When was the first tool use in people?
-first seen in the fossil record 2.4 MYA in Homo habilis -other animals also use tools but they don't have creative vocabulary of tool use- they don't make tools that are used to make other tools
What did the first tools look like? (Oldowan)
-ad hoc simple ones -the ones you can find
What were later tools like?
-1.8 MYA Acheulean bi-faced tools, more sophisticated -200 000 years ago Levallios tools show a vocabulary of tools, additional technologies such as use of strings -these demonstrate the ability to plan to the future -require a temporal structuring of behaviour and the creation of intermediate solution prior to the final solution (Levallios)
What part of the brain are you using when classifying tools?
the ability to classify is not prefrontal
-inferior temporal region (like the face recognition)
-the ventral pathway
-prefrontal activity involved in tool use as well
-areas 45 and 47 are important for naming objects
-44 45 is broca's area
-you classify in inferior temporal then name and know what it does via prefrontal cortex
-here more conceptual representation
How do we solve practical problems/concrete operations?
1: From objects: superior temporal gyrus, fusiform gyrus 2: via the ventral stream 3: to objective conceptualization: BA 45-descriptive representation, BA47- symbolic potential = there is a divide in what hemisphere represent what- left: quantitative/parametric; right- objective /iconographic -evidence suggest that Broca's area (the 45 and 47 roughly) organizes not just language but similarly organizes body movements in relation to motor learning and communication -organises our motor control in relation to objrct we interact with
What is the division in right and left hemisphere and solving practical problems?
1. left: quantitative/parametric; 2. right- objective /iconographic
When grasping a hammer never having seen it and knowing it, what is the difference?
-natural way to hold a hammer is close to the centre of mass= mechanistic -if you know what it does = semantic knowledge
What part of the brain are you using when looking at a novel object?
-Brodman area 46
-last area of the brain to become fully myelinated
-the last that develops
-abstraction in children develops later as well
How does abstraction in people develop?
-at about 12 years of age children become able to perform the logical operation and abstract conceptualizations to form and integrate a personal set of constructs (beliefs) -the last area of the brain to mature is the area 46, the top of the hierarchy in behavioural control -the dorsal stream (where) carries information from sensory association areas about the where and when of events and objects to BA 46 -BA 46 ideates space and time and other abstractions (eg atomic structure, god). The currency of BA46 is abstract concepts and the synthesis of possibilities, general principles of action and hypotheses
What is the "currency" of BA46?
-BA 46 ideates space and time and other abstractions (eg atomic structure, god). The currency of BA46 is abstract concepts and the synthesis of possibilities, general principles of action and hypotheses
What doe practical solutions require to some degree?
-practical creativity, some imagination
What do you need to appreciate the properties of objects and materials?
-need to have a semantic scheme for these and a map of their use and applicability = a conceptualization of tools
What are beyond the practical or parametrical properties?
-iconic or symbolic properties, and the ability to conceptualize and create objects of psychological significance (art)
How common is invention?
-rare -imitation is common, most of our skilled learning is by copying not inventing
Where does our exploratory drive come from and what is its function?
Evolution: are survival imperatives (survival of the fittest) or excess capacity (relaxed selection) driving adaptive advantage? -genes control brain development and function, the outcomes (behaviours) are selectable traits -eg. SIRT1- exploratory drive: anxiety, vigilance, reward system functionality
How do we understand?
-characteristics of problem solving can include analytic approaches and /or synthetic "big picture" insightful solutions
How does insight happen?
-insight solutions appear to involve whole brain regulation, focus, filtering, re-strategizing
Ho much do we use the capacity for insight?
-imitation is more common form of problem solving than invention. The capacity to socialize problem solving as Science has generated our modern technological culture