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How much do we use?

 
 
Reply Wed 7 Sep, 2005 07:20 pm
This will be really boring, but I need your help.

You know the old myth about how much of our brain we use? It's an important little detail to a project I'm working on.

I've heard we only use 5% and some say 20%. Which one is it? I DON'T CARE if it's true or not--that doesn't matter--I just want to be accurate about the public pool of common knowledge.
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Type: Discussion • Score: 0 • Views: 1,026 • Replies: 24
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LionTamerX
 
  1  
Reply Wed 7 Sep, 2005 07:22 pm
I've heard somewhere between 5% and 10%.
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Lord Ellpus
 
  1  
Reply Wed 7 Sep, 2005 07:53 pm
When I am awake.......5%

When I should be asleep......100%.

...and that is why I am posting at 2.55am.
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Slappy Doo Hoo
 
  1  
Reply Wed 7 Sep, 2005 08:19 pm
If they say you only use 10% of your brain, then there's a 90% chance that isn't true.

LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL!!!!
ROTFLMAO!!!!!!!!!! HAHAHAHAHA!!!! HARHARHAR!!!
LOLOLOLOLOLOLOL!!!!

I'm silly goose!
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roger
 
  1  
Reply Wed 7 Sep, 2005 08:24 pm
All things considered, I hope it's a very small percentage.
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Gargamel
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Sep, 2005 08:10 am
Thanks for the feedback y'all.

I hope it's a small percentage, particularly when I remember the time I was trying to unroll a pair of socks by whipping them in the air and inadvertantly hit myself in the nuts and fell over.
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roger
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Sep, 2005 08:57 am
Un huh. It's nice to know there's room for improvement.
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Chai
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Sep, 2005 09:01 am
Gargamel wrote:
Thanks for the feedback y'all.

I hope it's a small percentage, particularly when I remember the time I was trying to unroll a pair of socks by whipping them in the air and inadvertantly hit myself in the nuts and fell over.


have you every punched yourself in the eye by accident?
boy that smarts.

an old boyfriend (the musician) was closing the accordian door to the closet and caught his thingy in it......I thought it was much funnier than he did.......

however, I suppose his % of brain utilization went up, he alway put in underwear on before going to the closet from that point on.
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ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Sep, 2005 09:15 am
The Ten percent thing is a myth.

Snopes
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ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Sep, 2005 09:17 am
Another way to put it is this.

What percent of your brain would you mind if we cut out?

Subtract that number from 100%, and that is the percentage that you are using.

(I got 100%)
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material girl
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Sep, 2005 09:22 am
I think since college Ive used about 10% of my brain.
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jpinMilwaukee
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Sep, 2005 09:34 am
I watched a video about quantum physics the other day that said we are capable of proccessing 400,000,000,000 (that's 400 billion) bits of information per second but usually only proccess around 2000 bits per second.
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sozobe
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Sep, 2005 09:38 am
Yeah, jp's meaning is the one I think of -- not so much that there are chunks of matter that go completely unused and are therefore expendable, but that at any given time we are actively using only a small percentage of the entire brain. As in, over 24 hours (say) we may use all of it, but in a millisecond snapshot we're only using part of it.
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ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Sep, 2005 09:52 am
I question the meaning of the term "capable of". Go ahead, try your hardest and use even 4 billion "bits". I don't think it is humanly possible (and we are stuck being humans).

I also think using the computer term "bit" to refer to brains is probably suspect. Brains and computers don't at all work the same way.
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dragon49
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Sep, 2005 09:58 am
my brother is a neurosurgeon, and he says that they are still trying to understand some of the functions of the brain and its operation, so it is impossible to judge how much of we actually use. especially since they don't even know what exactly what the human brain is capable of. any #'s you hear are ideas based on an incomplete understanding of the brain in general since even those who study it don't have a complete understanding.
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jpinMilwaukee
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Sep, 2005 10:50 am
ebrown_p wrote:
I question the meaning of the term "capable of". Go ahead, try your hardest and use even 4 billion "bits". I don't think it is humanly possible (and we are stuck being humans).


That was kind of the point of the video. To try to get people to understand the power of the mind and what it is capable of. Many people learn their restrictions of their mind. Reading is a good example of that. We teach people to read one... word... at... a... time... when we are capable of reading much more. ehbeth is a good example of this. I had a conversation with her before about how she reads here

Reading fast is merely the beginnning of what the mind is capable of.

ebrown_p wrote:
I also think using the computer term "bit" to refer to brains is probably suspect. Brains and computers don't at all work the same way.


It didn't refer to computer terms but bits of information. It is used as a measurment.
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ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Sep, 2005 11:15 am
How do you define a "bit" of information processed by the brain in a way that can be measured.

Forgive me, but one of my pet peeves (as a science educator) is when people make scientific-sounding statements about things that aren't at all scientific. I can't imagine where the claim of 400,000,000 bits is from-- and I can't imagine how you would measure this.

If the show explains a concrete experiment that gives this result, than I stand corrected. But all to often science writers throw numbers around with no information on how they were derived. This is why the urban legend about using 10% of your brain (itself a scientific sounding number) is so persistent in popular culture.

I would bet the reason the writer used the word "bit" is to make the computer metaphor. I bet the dragons brother wouldn't use use this word.
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dragon49
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Sep, 2005 11:29 am
i think what is most amazing to me that is humans have been around for however long, and we still don't understand how the brain operates completely. i mean we get neurons firing and all that, but a true understanding of why one person is capable of learning more or why one person is so much more creative or why one person thinks logically and others more conceptually...nothing.

in fact most of what we have learned about emotions, memory, etc, is through accidents (people destroying part of their brains and acted completely different than they did before.)

it seems most of you are focusing on what we can process/learn, but you have to remember that your brain controls every movement, every emotion, every thought, every breath, every heart beat, every keystroke...that is an awful lot when you truly sit and think about it.

again, i say even the most knowledge people in the world about the human brain have no idea how much of it we use since they can't even understand some of the functions of it (ie-dimensia-sp?- no one is really sure what causes it or how it happens...alzhiemer's-sp?-either and these are deteriorations of the brain).

argue all you want, there is no answer. sorry Sad
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ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Sep, 2005 11:42 am
dragon49 wrote:

again, i say even the most knowledge people in the world about the human brain have no idea how much of it we use since they can't even understand some of the functions of it (ie-dimensia-sp?- no one is really sure what causes it or how it happens...alzhiemer's-sp?-either and these are deteriorations of the brain).

argue all you want, there is no answer. sorry Sad


Factually I understand the answer completely.

I would try to explain it to you, but you wouldn't be able to understand since you only use 10% of your brain.
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jpinMilwaukee
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Sep, 2005 12:51 pm
ebrown_p wrote:
How do you define a "bit" of information processed by the brain in a way that can be measured.

Forgive me, but one of my pet peeves (as a science educator) is when people make scientific-sounding statements about things that aren't at all scientific. I can't imagine where the claim of 400,000,000 bits is from-- and I can't imagine how you would measure this.


By all means ebrown, check out the video yourself and feel free to refute the various quantum physicists that make these claims. I am merely relaying the information that was passed on to me by people far more intelligent than I.

Here is the link to the video.

I'm pretty sure you can also find it at your local Blockbluster.
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