Brain on the Web December 2007


by Ben Mauk

December 7, 2007

This month’s Web sites contain information on mirror neurons, migraines and other mysterious workings of the mind. These sites were active as of December 3, 2007.

  • Watch a 14-minute video from television show NOVA on the workings and significance of mirror neurons at www.pbs.org/wgbh/ nova/sciencenow/3204/01.html. Some scientists speculate that these neurons, discussed in “I Feel Your Pain” on page 4, are the source of human language and empathy.
  • Researchers and well-known pop scientists lend their brand of brain philosophizing to the “How the Mind Works” talks at the annual TED conference, videos of which are available at www.ted.com/index.php/themes/view/id/4. Among the selections: Vilayanur Ramachandran speaks on mirror neurons, Steven Pinker looks and language and violence, and Dan Dennett shares his thoughts on consciousness. 
  • At the home of the American Headache Society, located at www.achenet.org, find migraine prevention and treatment information, as well as a special section for parents discussing migraine variants in children (scroll  over “Information for Patients” on the left side of the site). “Migraine Brains ‘Are Different’ ” reports on a study linking the chronic headaches to cortex thickness.