A Conversation With Robert Sapolsky

I first met Robert Sapolsky years ago at a research conference. My first impression was that he was quiet… too quiet. In a crowded hotel lobby with hundreds of scientists busily jabbering about themselves and their research, he seemed almost transparent. He didn’t talk much, took up very little personal space and seemed comfortable and…

Bill Newsome’s Neural Basis of Behavior

Dr. William Newsome is sitting at his PC computer grumbling. “Do you know what IBM stands for?” Newsome asks in a slight Southern drawl. “It stands for ‘I’m Building a Mac’,” he quips, displaying quick-witted charm and ardent loyalty to the Macintosh operating system. Dr. Newsome, an associate professor of neurobiology at Stanford University, is…

When You Don’t Understand the Brains You’re Trying to Teach

Most beginning teachers quickly discover that they don’t completely understand all the curricular material they’re expected to teach, and many of the noteworthy events the mass media constantly report. Professional pride and the questions and confusion of our students tend to nudge us to try to develop at least a functional understanding of such issues.…