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Preface

Preface

Think for a moment about all that’s happening while you read this text: how your eyes move to center themselves on the words, how you idly scratch your arm while you’re thinking, the attention-grabbing movements, noises, and other distractions you’re filtering out. How does all this work? As one brain speaking to another, here’s a secret: it isn’t easy.

The brain is a fearsomely complex information-processing environment. Take the processing involved in seeing, for instance. One of the tasks involved in seeing is detecting the motion in every tiny portion of vision, in such and such a direction and at such and such a speed, and representing that in the brain. But another task is seeing a face in the light that falls on the retina, figuring out what emotion it’s showing, and representing that concept in the brain, somehow, too.


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