Thursday, October 23, 2014

"The Nose, an Emotional Time Machine"

Since we have not gone over sense of smell yet in class, I saw this article and decided I had to look through it.  At first it gives the challenge of tasting gourmet jelly beans until you memorize the taste than try it again, but pinching your nose so you can no longer smell it when eating it.  The author called one of the nose's processes olfaction and made it very obvious how important our sense of smell is to many aspects of our life.  They also state that the olfaction can be the slowest but the fastest sense by different aspects. Angier states that, " Olfaction is our slow sense, for it depends on messages carried not at the speed of light or of sound, but at the far statelier pace of a bypassing breeze, a pocket of air enriched with the sort of small, volatile molecules that our nasal-based odor receptors can read. Yet olfaction is our quickest sense. Whereas new signals detected by our eyes and our ears must first be assimilated by a structural way station called the thalamus before reaching the brain’s interpretive regions, odiferous messages barrel along dedicated pathways straight from the nose and right into the brain’s olfactory cortex, for instant processing." (New York Times) Because of this article I am very interested in what we will learn about the nose, and I suggest everyone to look at the article to get a preview of what we will learn in this class.

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