Technical Program

Paper Detail

Paper: PS-1B.31
Session: Poster Session 1B
Location: H Fl├Ąche 1.OG
Session Time: Saturday, September 14, 16:30 - 19:30
Presentation Time:Saturday, September 14, 16:30 - 19:30
Presentation: Poster
Publication: 2019 Conference on Cognitive Computational Neuroscience, 13-16 September 2019, Berlin, Germany
Paper Title: Understanding the timing of cognitive processes with a variable rate neural code
Manuscript:  Click here to view manuscript
License: Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.
Authors: S. Thomas Christie, Paul Schrater, University of Minnesota, United States
Abstract: Cognitive processes all require time, as they universally depend on information transmission between brain regions limited by physical and biological constraints. The time required for behavior also exhibits surprisingly lawful variation with task demands, success and failure, stimulus and response complexity, familiarity, practice and learning. Here we consider these regularities as consequences of constraints on information transmission, which we show provide rational predictions for timing effects across a surprising range of cognitive domains. We use a simple model for neural information transmission based on a variable-length rate coding model built with Poisson processes, Bayesian inference, and an entropy-based decision threshold that simultaneously replicates a broad array of well-known reaction-time effects. By providing a principled connection between a high-level normative decision framework with time-dependent neural rate codes, we integrate several disjoint ideas in cognitive science through translating plausible constraints into information theoretic terms.