Streaming of two sections on the uses of Wikipedia for education and scientific dissemination

Videos of the workshops "The Use of Wikipedia in Education," with LiAnna Davis (Wiki Edu Foundation), and "How to disseminate scientific topics on Wikimedia projects," with Davis and João Alexandre Peschanski (NeuroMat/FCL), that occurred on March 13 and 14, at the University of São Paulo. Streaming was made available by USP. Videos in English.

Encouraging education work in Brazil

A group of Wikimedians based at USP’s Research, Innovation and Dissemination Center for Neuromathematics (RIDC NeuroMat) has dramatically improved information available on the Portuguese Wikipedia on topics in neuroscience and mathematics. With a grant funded by São Paulo Research Foundation (FAPESP), they’re working hard to bring more science information to the Portuguese Wikipedia. LiAnna Davis, Wiki Edu Blog, 03/20/2017.

Project strives for improving the quality of life of people with Parkinson's Disease

On April 11, the World Parkinson's Disease Day is celebrated; and this year the celebration is more special, since it has been 200 years since the first description of the disease, by James Parkinson. "We have progressed in the treatment of the disease, since then and especially in the last ten years, but we are still far away from finding a cure," says Maria Elisa Pimentel Piemonte, from USP and NeuroMat. Carolina Marins Santos, Jornal da USP, 4/12/2017. (In Portuguese)

Correlations induced by depressing synapses in critically self-organized networks with quenched dynamics

João Guilherme Ferreira Campos, Ariadne de Andrade Costa, Mauro Copelli and Osame Kinouchi

In a recent work, mean-field analysis and computer simulations were employed to analyze critical self-organization in networks of excitable cellular automata where randomly chosen synapses in the network were depressed after each spike (the so-called annealed dynamics). Calculations agree with simulations of the annealed version, showing that the nominal branching ratio σ converges to unity in the thermodynamic limit, as expected of a self-organized critical system. However, the question remains whether the same results apply to the biological case where only the synapses of firing neurons are depressed (the so-called quenched dynamics). We show that simulations of the quenched model yield significant deviations from σ = 1 due to spatial correlations. However, the model is shown to be critical, as the largest eigenvalue of the synaptic matrix approaches unity in the thermodynamic limit, that is, λc = 1. We also study the finite size effects near the critical state as a function of the parameters of the synaptic dynamics.

A Test of Hypotheses for Random Graph Distributions Built From EEG Data

Andressa Cerqueira; Daniel Fraiman; Claudia D. Vargas and Florencia Leonardi

The theory of random graphs has been applied in recent years to model neural interactions in the brain. While the probabilistic properties of random graphs has been extensively studied, the development of statistical inference methods for this class of objects has received less attention. In this work we propose a non-parametric test of hypotheses to test if a sample of random graphs was generated by a given probability distribution (one-sample test) or if two samples of random graphs were originated from the same probability distribution (two-sample test). We prove a Central Limit Theorem providing the asymptotic distribution of the test statistics and we propose a method to compute the quantiles of the finite sample distributions by simulation. The test makes no assumption on the specific form of the distributions and it is consistent against any alternative hypothesis that differs from the sample distribution on at least one edge-marginal. Moreover, we show that the test is a Kolmogorov-Smirnov type test, for a given distance between graphs, and we study its performance on simulated data. We apply it to compare graphs of brain functional network interactions built from electroencephalographic (EEG) data collected during the visualization of point light displays depicting human locomotion.

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