More than any year before, 2012 was the year neuroscience exploded into pop culture. From mind-controlled robot hands to cyborg animals to TV specials to triumphant books, brain breakthroughs were tearing up the airwaves and the internets.
From all the thrilling neurological adventures we covered over the past year, we’ve collected five stories we want to make absolutely sure you didn’t miss. Now, no matter how scientific our topic is, any Top 5 list is going to turn out somewhat subjective.
For one thing, we certainly didn’t cover every neuroscience paper published in 2012 – we like to pick and choose the stories that seem most interesting to us, and leave the whole “100 percent daily coverage” free-for-all to excellent sites like ScienceDaily. As you may’ve also noticed, we tend to steer clear of headlines like “Brain Region Responsible for [X] Discovered!” because – as Ben talks about with Matt Wall in this interview – those kinds of discoveries are usually as vague and misleading as they are overblown by the press. Instead, we chose to focus on five discoveries carry some of the most profound implications of any research published this past year – both for brain science, and for our struggle to understand our own consciousness. So on that note, here – in countdown order – are the five discoveries that got us the most pumped up in 2012!
5. A Roadmap of Brain Wiring
4. Laser-Controlled Desire
3. Programmable Brain Cells
2. Memories on Disc
1. Videos of Thoughts (via http://theconnecto.me/2012/12/the-top-5-neuroscience-breakthroughs-of-2012/)