How the brain really works, butterflies

The key insight: the brain is a multi-layer prediction machine. All neural processing consists of two streams: a bottom-up stream of sense data, and a top-down stream of predictions. These streams interface at each level of processing, comparing themselves to each other and adjusting themselves as necessary.

~ Scott Alexander from,

This seems to be rocking my world. There’s an actual theory of how the brain works?

So we are likely getting more lead, more omega-6 (and relatively less omega-3), and less lithium than people in 1850. If there has been an increase in crime and other undesirable/impulsive behaviors, I think these biological insults are at least as worthy of examination as political changes that have occurred during that time.

~ Scott Alexander from,

…and my brain thought that this (aside from the actual data and science in the article) seems like a very compelling look at the big scale; tiny changes making subtle tidal shifts at the hundreds-of-millions-of-people scale.

Butterflies and radar:

…and this popped up today, right before I saw a Cosmopolitan (aka Painted Lady) this afternoon.