I've been reading up on neurology lately and I'm mystified by pyramidal neurons. The pyramidal neurons in the prefrontal cortex, for example, have maybe 20,000 inputs through their dendritic trees and 1 output through the axon. The output is an action potential that always has the same waveform, up to the usual imperfections. Strength of a signal is indicated not by a change in the waveform but by emission of more waveforms (essentially all the same) per unit of time. So, these neurons are getting a tremendous amount of information and then reducing it to (1) one waveform (always the same) and (2) an integer frequency, which is probably not more than 100hz. I cannot imagine what such a device is good for, but these pyramidal neurons dominate the part of the brain usually associated with consciousness. Where are the outputs used and what are they used for? I'm also mystified why no one else comments on this. The wiki article on pyramidal neurons says this regarding cognition (consciousness): "Pyramidal neurons in the prefrontal cortex are implicated in cognitive ability. In mammals, the complexity of pyramidal cells increases from posterior to anterior brain regions. The degree of complexity of pyramidal neurons is likely linked to the cognitive capabilities of different anthropoid species. Because the prefrontal cortex receives inputs from areas of the brain that are involved in processing all the sensory modalities, pyramidal cells within the prefrontal cortex appear to process different types of inputs. Pyramidal cells may play a critical role in complex object recognition within the visual processing areas of the cortex." OK, but how do pyramidal neurons actually do anything useful? Are we just dumb about the brain?