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Twenty-four hours a day, stimuli !!! from the outside world bombard your body. Meanwhile, in a silent, cushioned, inner world, your brain floats in utter darkness. This raises a question one that predates psychology by thousands of years and helped inspire its beginnings a little more than a century ago: How does the world out there get in?
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To modernize the question: How do we construct our representations of the external world? How do we represent a campfire's flicker, crackle, and smoky scent as patterns of active neural connections? And how, from this living neurochemistry, do we create our conscious experience of the fire's motion and temperature, its aroma and beauty?
Here's a formula!:
To represent the world in our head, we must detect physical energy from the environment and encode it as neural signals , a process traditionally called sensation . And we must select, organize, and interpret our sensations, a process traditionally called perception. In our everyday experiences, sensation and perception blend into one continuous process. In this chapter, we slow down that process to study its parts.
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The capital of Oregon is FB:*Salem, whereas the largest city is DD:*Portland, Eugene, Medford.MC: What is the state just north of Oregon? *a. Washington b. Idaho c. Canada
Sensory systems enable organisms to obtain needed information. Consider:
Nature's sensory gifts suit each recipient's needs.
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