Sensory input from the environment is a very small fraction of an organic brains ongoing activity, there is not much to argue there.
Looking at neurons is like looking at individual lights in a moving sign. The message could be of a graphics nature or presented in any method of writing or print. It is pattern recognition that enables the "communication". A moving sign in a bar (alcohol for sale) competes with other images. The sign is soon ignored. If the sign were to begin announcing free drinks, all at once it would become a focus of attention. The brain got a message in the dynamic sequence of the patterns. There is no need for similarity of pattern storage or processing in "memory" systems. I might register the freebie feeling with a flag for where I am. A tea-totaling sign designer might register the font face used and not recall message. Where is the analog of the neural code? If Alan Turing had been a neurologist Hitler would have ruled the world. I cannot prove that. Why are people trying to find codes and explain the most complex system we can access; armed with a high school electricity course? They are well paid to do so. I am equally qualified but not well paid. I am well amused.
How we function is how our brain functions and how the neural "net" functions and on. up and down the hierarchy. We are very efficient at extracting signals from noise, to use an electronic communications analogy. Threshold logic the security blanket that presents a plausible venue for the construction of custom made brains was demonstrated as non viable more than twenty years ago. A man made method of learning that we can "understand as long as there is no stringent matmematical analysis. Threshold logic a great old campfire discussion topic. The "left" brain research community will persist in whipping a dead horse as long as they are getting paid. On the other hand it keeps the clean hand set out of the way.
Everything is conjecture until pragmatically validated. As long as students are inspired by and susceptible to the cultural bias (and neurosis) of the professors vision of the environment they will go down the same garden path. When tenure is achieved there is perhaps little incentive apart from ego gratification (methinks eh!). There is much dancing around the campfire. Being out in the dark seeing the campfire from a distance or maybe only the glow; tests the bonds to the tribe. The campfire circle is the place for politicians. They cannot exist without the figurative campfire. The academicians stay close to the light of the campfire. They will open new vistas by trading old ideas. I wonder if the little eddys are essential to main stream throughput.
Perhaps the Universities and Colleges warehouse the collected knowledge of man (and woman). I also believe that the safest place to access that knowledge is in the libraries; supplemented by one on one dialog with a selected master (read guru) of the discipline of interest..
A small number of real scientists exist in each herd, eventually their views are accepted, when all else fails. It seems to be a duty to fight everything new in the interest of "science" and protecting the world from false information. The medical and religeous fraternities were and remain very good at that.
I am an analyst, I am an observer, My "observations" are contaminated, my analysis is fraught with error. If I find a better road map it will be ignored. Academic scientists behave like car drivers that are hopelessly lost, but they will end up somewhere and find out where that place is and pretend that it is where they were going all the time. Does anyone need any examples. Please attack my ideas.
Once I offered some technical support to some psychologists, I found that I would have to become a "psychologist" for my experience in research & development to be acceptible. It was Ok to build black boxes as long as they were cheaper and could be purchased with grant money.
Always it is the same system of patterns.I thank (my) God that real Chaos is beyond my grasp.
The Olde Tsaeler
Get your mind boggled.
These guys may have an idea where it's at.