This blog is currently on hiatus owing to work commitments. Whilst I still keep an eye on the goings on at RiAus, and contribute to the work of the good folks at eLife, little will be added to this blog for the foreseeable future. Simon Says remains open for business, albeit at a reduced capacity. Thanks for stopping by, and I hope the archive of content found here will prove to be of interest.

Wednesday, 10 October 2012


"Octopuses make it notoriously difficult to get recordings from electrodes inserted into the brain, because they can selectively shut off blood supply to an area of their body or brain. That's if they allow the researchers to insert electrodes at all. Jennifer Basil, a cephalopod researcher at the City University of New York tells the story of one colleague who took on that challenge: "He thought the octopus was anaesthetised, so they put the electrode in and the octopus reached up with an arm and pulled it out." That marked the end of his work with octopuses. "He has worked with lots of animals but he said 'that animal knows what I'm thinking. He doesn't want me to do this so I'm not going to'," Basil says."

Eight arms, big brain: What makes cephalopods clever
, Caroline Williams, New Scientist 2816, 2011

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