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Cognitive gains by design

  1. Sep 20, 2006 #1
    I've just joined this forum so I don't quite know the ropes. Perhaps one or more of you could give me your opinion or advice.

    I'm writing a paper having to do with the Flynn Effect and other cognitive gains by design. Do you see any interest in that discussion here?

    Here's something of a conceptual handle:

    Science identifies and seeks to explain phenomena in narrow experimental realms so their causalities and effects can be distinguished and known apart from other causalities and effects. Reductive science facilitates studies of brains and efferent behaviors in microcosm, but doesn’t relate the causalities and effects of synaptic events to current events in foreign policy. Foreign policy, for example, can be seen as an emergent property of consciousness, unknowable in terms of causal synaptic events in the general sense of Nicolai Hartmann’s categorial novum. Speaking of spanning consciousness from neuron spikes to moral philosophy, science doesn’t comprehend those longer spans because it doesn’t try. Science can’t attribute localized synaptic activity to introspective thinking, much less to chains of efferent social phenomena; that would be the mind-brain problem in spades, for science alone, a bridge too far. But...

    ...suppose any given conceptual span depends to some extent on related symbolic structure. If the focus of some study of consciousness is substantially neurobiological, that highly reductive focus tends to preclude any coherent bridge to social phenomenology. Then, suppose the desired bridge might be possible with appropriate chunking / recoding strategies.

    "What I am suggesting here is that the shift from associative predictions to symbolic predictions is initially a change in mnemonic strategy, a recoding. It is a way of offloading redundant details from working memory, by recognizing a higher-order regularity in the mess of associations, a trick that can accomplish the same task without having to hold all the details in mind."

    (Deacon, Terrence W. The Symbolic Species: The co-evolution of language and the brain. NY: WW Norton & Company, 1997, p.89.)

    What I have in mind to assay is the Flynn Effect in larger context and the looming prospect of substantial cognitive gains by design.

    Also, how might I attach a document to a post?
  2. jcsd
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