subconsciously make thousands of tiny predictions each day,
whether it's contemplating when a bus will arrive, who is
knocking on the door or if a dropped glass will break.
scientists are beginning to unravel how the brain is such a
surprisingly accurate fortune-teller - but only when it
comes to mundane events.
Researchers at Washington University in St Louis focused on
the mid-brain dopamine system (MDS), which provides signals
to the rest of the brain when unexpected events occur.
Each of us makes thousands of tiny
predictions, such as contemplating when a bus will arrive,
every day. Scientists are now beginning to unravel how the
brain is such a surprisingly accurate fortune-teller
functional MRI (fMRI), they found that this system encodes
prediction error when viewers are forced to choose what will
happen next in a video of an everyday event.
found that between 80 and 90 per cent of viewer predictions
were correct, depending on when the footage was stopped.
researcher Jeffrey Zacks said predicting the near future is
vital in guiding behaviour and is a key component of
theories of perception, language processing and learning.
said: 'It's valuable to be able to run away when the lion
lunges at you, but it's super-valuable to be able to hop out
of the way before the lion jumps.
big adaptive advantage to look just a little bit over the