Behavioral and Brain Sciences

Short Communication

A population code with added grandmothers?

Malcolm P. Young a1, Stefano Panzeri a1 and Robert Robertson a1
a1 Neural Systems Group, Department of Psychology, University of Newcastle, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 7RU, United Kingdom


Page's “localist” code, a population code with occasional, maximally firing elements, does not seem to us usefully or testably different from sparse population coding. Some of the evidence adduced by Page for his proposal is not actually evidence for it, and coding by maximal firing is challenged by lower firing observed in neuronal responses to natural stimuli.