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Postdocs available in Cold Spring Harbor, NY

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   Auditory and somatosensory modalities.

Postdoctoral positions are available in Carlos Brody's research group
at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory.  (see
http://www.cshl.org/labs/brody). Applicants should have an interest in
quantitative approaches to psychology and neuroscience, and should
have, or be near completing, a Ph.D. in Experimental Psychology,
Neuroscience, or in a quantitative field (e.g. Physics, Math,

Successful applicants will be expected to lead, after any appropriate
guidance and/or necessary self-education, the group's research efforts
in one of the two projects listed below (one mostly auditory, the
other mostly somatosensory). Those who in addition wish to develop and
pursue their own, independent, self-originated, line(s) of research
will be encouraged to do so: the lab seeks an atmosphere of vigorous
discussion and creative independence. Applications from self-guided,
motivated, and independent-minded scientists are particularly welcome.

Applicants should send a CV, the names of three references, and a
summary of research interests and experience to: Carlos Brody, 1
Bungtown Road, Freeman Building, Cold Spring Harbor, NY 11724,
USA. The positions are open immediately; salaries are on the NIH pay



1) Psychophysics and neurocomputational modeling of working memory.

   The psychophysical study of short-term memory has a long
   history. During most of this history, however, no biophysical
   neural-network level models of short-term memory existed: only
   during the 90's have these come into existence. They are now the
   focus of much research. Our lab is actively engaged in this
   research, particularly with reference to memories of
   continuous-valued parameters (e.g. our previous work on such
   memories, Romo et al. Nature 1999).  Most of the recent
   neurocomputational models depend on assumptions (e.g., the
   attractors are continuous), or make predictions (e.g., in
   continuous attractors, noise should be diffusive), that can be
   tested psychophysically. We are carrying out such tests in human
   experiments, using the auditory modality (short-term memory of pure
   tone frequencies). In collaboration with monkey neurophysiologists,
   our goal is to reveal answers about the neural basis of short-term
   memory through a combination of computational,
   electrophysiological, and psychophysical techniques.

2) Encoding and representation of time.

   How are temporal patterns represented in the brain? And how are they
   recognized? These are wide open, crucially important, but little
   studied questions. In collaboration with the Romo awake monkey
   group, we are addressing these questions by requiring subjects
   (both monkey and human) to discriminate between two sequential
   "Morse-code style" patterns of mechanical pulses, applied to the
   tip of a finger. This simple but direct approach allows us to
   study patterns defined in purely temporal terms. Our group at CSHL
   will be carrying out human psychophysics experiments that will help
   guide and supplement the monkey neurophysiology experiments. We
   will also be heavily involved in the data analysis of the monkey
   experiments, and our eventual goal will be to build computational
   models that explain our combined results.