Let’s Keep the Criticism (of Brain Imaging) Constructive

If you have interest in neuroscience and how developing brain imaging technology is influencing the field for better or for worse, you owe it to yourself to read Virginia Hughes’ “In Defense of Brain Imaging” at the Only Human blog at National Geographic’s Phenomena. Hughes applies an even hand to the issues confronting brain imaging, its public perception, and the times where the criticism may be too extreme. In the end, we are left with a picture of a field that continues to develop, much like any other field, with leaps forward and gross missteps:

…neuroscientist Martha Farah makes two compelling counterpoints. One is that brain imaging methods have improved a great deal since the technology’s inception. The second is that its drawbacks — statistical pitfalls, inappropriate interpretations, and the like — are not much different from those of other scientific fields. – Virginia Hughes

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