It’s all about representations and their dynamics-towards brain decoding of thoughts and feelings
Choong-Wan (Wani) is the director of the Cocoan lab. His research focuses on understanding how the human brain represents, processes, and regulates pain and emotions using machine learning and computational modeling. He received his dual PhD in the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience and the Institute of Cognitive Sciences from the University of Colorado Boulder (PhD advisor: Tor D. Wager), and MA in Clinical psychology and BS in Biology from Seoul National University. Currently, he is an assistant professor at the IBS Center for Neuroscience Imaging Research and the Department of Biomedical Engineering in the Sungkyunkwan University (SKKU).
A renowned neuroscientist, Antonio Damasio, said that “a mind is a flow of mental images”, suggesting that human mind is basically the computer vision problem. However, Dr. Damasio also said that we become conscious only when “self comes to mind”, emphasizing the importance of “self”, which I guess has not been often considered in computer vision. What is self? It is a big question, but we know that our subjective experience (or feelings) is an important feature of “self”, and it provides motivation to act. As a computational-cognitive-affective neuroscientist (my lab is the CoCoAN lab), I am interested in how our brains (and we) create “me”-images distinct from “not me” images in the brain, and how our daily thoughts and feelings shape our behaviors and self-identity. In this talk, though I cannot provide a complete answer to these big questions, I will show you how I have been and will be approaching to these questions. Sh-, it’s all about representations and their dynamics. Please join me in this seminar and bring curious and collaborative mind! Any conversation would be deeply appreciated.