Tag Archives: iPhone

Whole Brain Catalog app for iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch

Earlier blog posts looked at the Whole Brain Catalog application, which provides a portal to a broad range of neuroscience data (see Other related blog posts below). Two days ago the Whole Brain Catalog team from the University of California San Diego released a version of the Whole Brain Catalog application for the iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch.

Viewing Whole Brain Catalog for iPhone close up of cells and neuropil in cerebellum section.
Figure 1. A close up view of a triple labeled cerebellum section on an iPhone using the Whole Brain Catalog app for iPad, iPhone and iPod touch.

Note: If you run into any issues running the Whole Brain Catalog app, check to make sure your device is connected with the Internet.

The introductory video is attractive and may be informative for those less familiar with neuroscience. On the iPhone and iPod touch the application opens to thirteen images that act as icons arrayed across the horizontal view. Each of these represents some aspect of the nervous system that you may examine in more detail by double tapping the icon.

Note: The application is strictly horizontal on iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch.

The icons represent the following:

  • Rat cerebellar cortex (triple labeled)
  • Another section from rat cerebellar cortex (triple labeled)
  • 3View mouse neuropil
  • Fruitfly DL1 cell
  • Mouse reference atlas (sagittal)
  • Mouse reference atlas (coronal)
  • Mouse RORB ISH marker
  • Developing mouse
  • Cat brainstage (sagital)
  • Embryonic 17a rat
  • Primate nissle stained brain section
  • Human brain section
  • Mouse brain section

Each section may be viewed in beautiful detail except, for some reason, the human brain section. Some are stunning (see for example Figure 1). However, currently the Whole Brain Catalog app for iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch is a sampler to entice the appetite. It’s not yet a tool for reference or serious research.

Note: The Whole Brain Catalog app for iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch is free and may be downloaded from the iTunes app store by clicking here.

Other related blog posts:

Whole Brain Catalog: the Google Earth for the Brain

Whole Brain Catalog: Brain Cells and Molecules

Whole Brain Catalog: Visualizing Neural Network Activity

Not Being Present in the Moment Takes Emotional Toll

Perhaps you’ve heard about being mindful from practitioners of meditation or maybe you try to be mindful in your everyday life. Then you know that being mindful is about being present in the moment. New research suggests that those who are mindful are happier.

Research described in the paper “A Wandering Mind Is an Unhappy Mind” (published November 12, 2010 in Science) utilizes an iPhone application to accumulate experience sampling data to an online data repository at TrackYourHappiness.org. According to the authors, experience sampling is the most reliable method for investigating real-world emotions. The technique involves randomly contacting people as they engage in their everyday activities and asking them to report their thoughts, feelings, and actions at that moment.

The team reported three findings from their research based on data from 2,250 adults living in the United States. First, people’s minds frequently wander (46.9% of samples). Second, they found that people were less happy while their minds were wandering than when they were not. This was true during all activities. Third, they found that what people were thinking about was a better predictor of their happiness than was what they were doing.

Our ability to think of things that are not presently happening seems to take an emotional toll. Why is mind wandering apparently the brain’s default mode of operation? Stimulus independent thought is apparently what enables people to reason and plan.

Would you like to track your personal happiness and find out what factors are associated with greater happiness for you personally? You can become a participant at TrackYourHappiness.org. When you do you’ll also contribute to studies like the one reviewed here and help to increase our scientific understanding of happiness.

Other related blog posts:

How Happy? Well-Being Research and Online Data Repositories

iPhone iOS4 eMail Messages with (no sender) and “this message has no content”

Apparently this problem is a symptom of Mail running in multitask mode. Here is a simple fix that should work for you until the problem is addressed by Apple.

Quit the Mail app from the multitask bar.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Click the Home button to exit the Mail app.
  2. Double-click the Home button to bring up the multitask bar listing currently “open” apps.
  3. Locate the Mail app icon in the multitask bar.
  4. Tap and hold the icon until the red minus sign appears.
  5. Tap the red minus.
  6. The Mail icon will vanish. You have now completely quit the Mail app.
  7. Double-click the Home button to exit the multitask bar.

When you next launch Mail the messages with no sender and no content should be gone.