Faced with unforeseen situations that require immediate and effective decision-making, the brain converts a dynamic scene into a static image, enabling it to understand the changing reality, thus saving time and only preserving space. A survey led by the Complutense University of Madrid has confirmed this with the help of more than 400 volunteers and computer games.
In many cases, people are forced to think and take quick and effective actions: on the road where an accident occurs, on the street among the crowd, or in battle.
To deal with these situations, the brain converts them into static images, freezing time and only preserving space, which makes it easier to understand the changing reality.This is the study published in Advanced Research Journal By the Complutense University of Madrid (Federation).
Ten years ago, the same team had already requested a call Time crunch hypothesisIn this way, the brain converts time into space, thereby simplifying the situation and being able to take immediate action. They believe that this has been proved with new experimental results.
According to his theory, when a person is in a dynamic situation, such as walking in a crowd, his brain converts the situation into a “photo”, which contains all the information needed for exercise: where he can pass and where he cannot pass. , The path continues to avoid crashes and so on.
He emphasized: “Just like our brain converts the entire movie into a single frame, when watching it, it enables us to understand the entire movie.” Valery MakarovHe is a researcher at the UCM Interdisciplinary Institute of Mathematics, and he collaborates with other colleagues at the university UNED and Nizhny Novgorod State University (Russia).
Experience computer games
Although the team put forward the time compression hypothesis ten years ago, until now, they have not been able to find a way to explicitly support or refute time compression through experiments, but they have now succeeded.
More than 400 volunteers from many universities at home and abroad participated in a computer game that tested their learning ability in different dynamic situations.According to the author, these are represented internally as static maps, called Compact internal representation (CIR, Its English abbreviation).
Time compression hypothesis. On the left is a dynamic scene in which the object generates a compact internal representation (CIR, right) of the situation to predict the movement of other parts and move safely. / Valeri A. Makarov et al./Journal of Advanced Studies
Makarov explained that in the game, they must infer a rule (“If this thing appears on the screen, press this key or that key”) so that the number of attempts they need to learn the rule depends on voluntary Whether or not to use time compression.
In one group of volunteers, the learning speed is faster due to time constraints, while in another group of volunteers, when users are forced to not use crunch (which can be controlled by visual stimuli), the learning speed is slower.
The researchers emphasize that mathematical analysis of the results obtained has confirmed this hypothesis, while excluding other possible explanations.
“Our research results further show that the brain can eliminate time by converting time into space (from film to photo). This will explain how we can make effective decisions immediately in complex situations that will change over time. From driving or practicing certain sports to fighting, escaping or hunting, these are the key skills for our survival in the evolution of species,” Makarov emphasized.
Applications in robotics and artificial intelligence
The author believes that these results have a dual meaning. On the one hand, explain the process involved in this process from the perspective of theory or neurophysiology. Spatio-temporal cognition On the other hand, it is used for artificial intelligence.
“If we know how the brain does it, we can robot Mathematicians concluded that they can use static representations, that is, use film instead of film, which will change over time to understand the film and act immediately in a universal, complex and effective way.
Representation of the dynamic situation of Villacorta-Atienza1 JA, Calvo Tapia C., Diez-Hermano S., Sanchez-Jimenez A., Lobov S., Krilova N., Murciano A., Lopez-Tolsa G., Pellon R. and Makarov VA Revealing the time crunch in human cognition,” “Journal of Advanced Research”, 2020; DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jare.2020.08.008.