Neuroscientists have produced a new map of the brain, full of beautifully bright colours. The scientific value of this is unclear, as is the accuracy. But the colours are nice. Or not, depending on your taste. And where exactly is your preference for certain colours located in the brain?
It’s funny that the scientists say that his “could be the most accurate map yet”. They aren’t certain about that. They doubt their own ideas, their own work and the products of that work. Why don’t they wait with publications till they know something for sure? Of course. They need to publish to get more research money. And obviously “we don’t know what we have here” is good enough for that goal.
“should help to explain how our cortex evolved” Evolved? Like “out of nothing”? Mr. Cuthbert, has it occurred to you that the brain is possibly so complex that it cannot possibly have evolved out of nothing? You base your ideas on a very wild and long disproven assumption. Why should anyone take you seriously? “One day, it may enable unprecedented precision in brain surgery.” It may, it could, it might and we keep dreaming. I wonder what area of the brain is responsible for these kind of wild dreams.
“It has been known for a while now roughly which regions control voluntary muscle movement, language, vision, sound, and aspects of personality, for example.” The key word being “roughly”. The problem is that everything that goes against the theory is ignored. There are plenty of people with brain damage in one of those regions, who do not have the problems that they should have with that kind of damage. The conclusion is that the theory is at least partially wrong. But scientists are rarely bothered by such inconveniences.
“a number now boosted to 180, the research team said.” The accuracy is unknown and the relevance is unclear. But they do have bright colours. “even in spite of individual variability.” Which shows that this research included a lot of wishful thinking. When things didn’t fit their theory it was just considered unimportant. But maybe it is extremely important. Maybe this variability shows that this whole map is completely useless.
Reality is that the brain is way too complicated for us to understand. So what’s the use of this kind of research? I have absolutely no idea. Maybe it will help to improve brain surgery. Maybe it will help in diagnosing all kinds of diseases. But does that lead to better treatments or better health? Probably not. It very rarely does. So the title neuroscientist sounds really important, but in reality these people are not doing anything useful and should better find themselves real jobs. But for some reason they rarely do.