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Questions


Vocal production - The bird song neural circuit produces stereotyped structure over a range of time-scales from milliseconds to tens of seconds. How are complex modular behaviors assembled from elementary neural units? What are the relationships between patterns of neural activity on different time-scales?


Auditory perception - how are temporal sequences processed in auditory cortex? How is auditory information integrated over hundreds of milliseconds to create memories for specific temporal patterns?


Experiments


Ensemble recording of neural activity in singing birds.


Auditory operant tasks and electrophysiology. We train birds to recognize and respond to specific temporal patterns, like Morse code, and examine how these patterns are transformed through multiple stages of auditory cortex.


Theories


Object-based time-frequency analysis


Ensemble computing & intrinsic dynamics of neural systems


Tools


Minimally invasive carbon-fiber electrode arrays


Software