Thursday, February 8, 2007

What Do You Think?

A friend wrote about the brain in her food blog. She described the brain as "‘ripe avocado’ like organ," which I don't really know how far the truth is, because I have never seen or touch a ripe avocado. You can read about it here.

I remembered reading brain facts for fun. Yup. At times I will pick something from the search engine (usually something to do with my assignments) and will click on link(s) in the pages. And another link(s), and another link(s). My web browser then will be loaded with colourful tabs, once the number was more than 50 in one window. Yes, I have some two or three other windows running. With tabs in each of them.

Back to the brain story. About human not using the brain to its full capacity. Human thoughts only occupy 10% of it. So what is your brain doing with the remaining 90%?

90% is a great number. Somebody said that we should somehow discover what the 90% is doing, when we know now we only use 10%. Wasted? Rot? Idle? What say you?

And here's an opinion expressed by another someone (sorry I couldn't name both, or the sources. My brain needs more practice). We don't want to know what the brain is doing. I repeat, we DON'T want to know what the brain is doing.

The logic is simple. And I respected him (him doesn't specifically refer to that gender, it's universal) for thinking out of the box (or maybe he had read somewhere about it, and expressing it as a comment, I don't know) when everybody is guessing where the 90% go and what they are doing and people (ordinary, not-so-ordinary, scientists, etc.) are like "Let's find out how to maximise the usage, we shouldn't waste that huge amount."

We DON'T want to know. Why? Well, he said the remaining 90% is doing jobs we don't want to know. Who wants to monitor the chemical level in his own body? Who wants to know what the cells are doing?

I am a computer science student. Then again, even if I'm not a computer science student, I can relate these things with computer. It is like using the computer. You pop up an application, it does this, it does that. You don't see the binary codes in it changing on and off, on and off to do what you ask it to do. And yes, you run that one application, but there are many other applications running in the background (just hope they are not viruses!)

Get the idea? OK. Back to the brain story.

Can you imagine what a life would be like when you are aware of every single thing going on? Imagine the sleepless nights you have when you are worried about someone you love, being far away from you, down with fever, perhaps.

Imagine if you have that kind of feeling when you are aware that your body needs more iron or calcium or your kidney is disposing the excessive water you consumed just now. Or the food you eat for lunch, the body is breaking the carbon chains, this stuff goes here, that one goes here and this one goes there.

If currently when you feel like peeing, you just know that "Uh-oh... My bladder is full, I need to go now." If you were to be aware of everything the brain is doing, you'll be like "I drank 5 glasses of water at one go this afternoon, now my body temperature is regulated, my cells are hydrated but I realised that I had drank more than enough, the kidneys are now doing their job. The water goes to the bladder. Uh-oh... My bladder is almost full. Just a bit more and I'll need to go to the toilet. OK, now it's full, I need to go."

Or the skin, regulating the body temperature. "The temperature is low, my body needs to warm up a bit. The receptors are signalling for the mechanism. My hair is rising, I have goose bumps on my skin, because the skin is trying not to lose the body heat too much to the environment, and the hair is trapping the air, creating an air blanket so the skin warms a bit."

If knowing 100% what the brain is doing makes you a super human, out of the ordinary, well, count me out. I just want to be a plain, silly me. I'd rather stick to the 10% than having to be aware of the tiny little things the brain is doing.

Maybe expanding the brain capabilities a bit more (some extra 10% maybe?) will be great. I mean, things like telepathy, telekinesis, clairvoyance, precognition - the sixth senses - would be cool in some ways. People with these abilities, are they using some portions of the 90%? Hmm...

But really, if what the guy expressed (about the brain doing things you don't want to know) is true, I will opt for not knowing everything. 10% is enough. I don't even feel like I'm using the maximum of the 10%. Hehe...

Image Processing midterm test tomorrow morning. I don't want to think about it.

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