Lab Notes

Short stories and links shared by the scientists in our community

External Link Condensed Matters on Soundcloud

Extended and exclusive audio versions of our Condensed Matters series.

External Link The Spiritual, Reductionist Consciousness of Christof Koch

What the neuroscientist is discovering is both humbling and frightening him.

External Link Scientific Controversies No. 11: Consciousness

Director of Sciences Janna Levin invites neuroscientist Christof Koch (President and Chief Scientific Officer of the Allen Institute for Brain Science) and philosopher David Chalmers (Director of the Center for Mind, Brain and Consciousness at New York University) to ask: Do androids actually dream of electric sheep?

External Link Daniel Dennet's Science of the Soul

A philosopher’s lifelong quest to understand the making of the mind.

External Link Why can’t the world’s greatest minds solve the mystery of consciousness?

Philosophers and scientists have been at war for decades over the question of what makes human beings more than complex robots

External Link Can Integrated Information Theory Explain Consciousness?

A radical new solution to the mind–body problem poses problems of its own

External Link Consciousness Began When the Gods Stopped Speaking

How Julian Jaynes’ famous 1970s theory is faring in the neuroscience age.

External Link Male cuttlefish filmed fighting over a female for the first time

Researchers have previously witnessed this behavior in the lab, but this is the first time it's been caught in the wild.

External Link How cuttlefish fight

There's a growing body of evidence that cuttlefish are smart enough to assess the relative strength of their opponents to gauge their odds before fighting. They modify their behaviors – including their skin patterns – accordingly.

External Link In changing oceans, cephalopods are booming

Cephalopods are known for rapid growth, short lifespans, and extra-sensitive physiologies, which may allow them to adapt more quickly than many other marine species.

External Link You're Not Hallucinating. That's Just Squid Skin.

Octopuses and cuttlefish are masters of underwater camouflage, blending in seamlessly against a rock or coral. But squid have to hide in the open ocean, mimicking the subtle interplay of light, water, and waves. How do they do it?

External Link Scientists capture video of dolphins risking death to eat octopus

Zombie. Tentacles.

External Link Octopuses Do Something Really Strange to Their Genes

"Humans don’t have this. Monkeys don’t. Nothing has this except the coleoids.”

External Link Squid Communicate With a Secret, Skin-Powered Alphabet

"Their body plan is so bizarre compared to ours that it’s hard to compare their brain structure and function to something that we know."