Why are our brains so ridiculously big? Tool use and exploration may be just side effects of social skills. Ferris Jabr on why we need to study the brain’s evolution in order to understand the modern mind. Lascaux’s Picassos: Katy Waldman on what prehistoric art tells us about the evolution of the human brain. Does the brain work logarithmically? New research suggests it does, when it’s the efficient way to process information. Humans can't be empathetic and logical at the same time: Brain scans find that the two modes are mutually exclusive. A laser to the brain eliminates bad habits in rats. Brain scan shows that thinking about math is as painful as a hot stove burn, if you're anxious. This is your brain on freestyle rap. Can brain science tell us how to live? Dominic Murphy reviews The Brain and the Meaning of Life by Paul Thagard. What brain features do we need? John Smart on preserving the self for later emulation. Several projects are trying to reverse-engineer the brain; in How to Create a Mind, futurist Ray Kurzweil champions their cause. Your unconscious brain can do math, process language. Research suggests the human brain is wired for harmony. Researchers have turned human mental activity into music, and it sounds uncannily like free-form jazz piano.

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