Something else about working memory

Hi, :call_me_hand:
Has anyone seen this video Something Else About Working Memory - YouTube ?

Imo it’s a valuable evidence for Numenta’s research and I would like to hear some thoughts about.

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Does anyone have a problem with the above statement? (from abstract of the youtube video)

Short term memory (STM) as a enabling capability for working memory, should not require continuous firing of neurons to keep thoughts “online” … Short-term synaptic plasticity seems to be a perfect mechanism for STM and WM.

Evidence: A person can be in the middle of some cognitive task, is interrupted by an urgent but totally unrelated event, the handling of which requires full attention, and afterwards resumes previous task.

Maybe it means the kind of tasks that are like remembering a phone number for a few seconds until we write it down, where we keep repeating it (potentially relying on hearing it) in order not to forget ? a small distraction and the memory is gone …

In my understanding the statement above is vague, it means that if you want to remember stuff somewhere something must be on. Of course is true, and probably it’s related to short therm plasticity somewhere as you said.

The video doesn’t try to answer where this place is or how it works, it suggests that the pathway to bring the working memory back to attention are the superficial gamma wave ( related to lateral PFC).
Maybe when a person resumes a task after an interruption it’s the gamma wave that carries the information to the relative columns to resume the task. In my understanding it’s just a pathway to carry information not a complete working memory system.

Moreover I think that the important discovery, if true, is about the saccade switching-hemisphere mechanism and all the new theories that it opens.

I’ve heard that higher up in the brain, what happens is that neurons burst fire but then keep quiet and after an interval burst fire again. Forgot if they mentioned the exact mechanism, but from what I gather it is not continuous firing.

I’ve heard that as you go higher in the cortex neurons remain active for longer the higher you go, I do not have the details, but I suspect that(assuming that is true) too high in the hierarchy and it would result in too prolonged and too expensive firing, so an alternate mechanism is used wherein burst firing with prolonged quiet periods takes place.

This is explained by the article:

Active Memory Processing
on Multiple Time-scales in Simulated Cortical Networks
with Hebbian Plasticity
ISBN 978-91-7873-030-8

See section 6.3. Paper II: A Spiking Working Memory Model based on Hebbian Short-term Potentiation

The whole PhD Thesis is worth reading, but paper II discusses the mechanisms which are responsible for the activity bursts & delays.