Abstract

This paper contains an attempt to describe certain adaptive and cooperative functions encountered in neural networks. The approach is a compromise between biological accuracy and mathematical clarity. Two types of differential equation seem to describe the basic effects underlying the formation of these functions: the equation for the electrical activity of the neuron and the adaptation equation that describes changes in its input connectivities. Various phenomena and operations are derivable from them: clustering of activity in a laterally interconnected network; adaptive formation of feature detectors; the autoassociative memory function; and self-organized formation of ordered sensory maps. The discussion tends to reason what functions are readily amenable to analytical modeling and which phenomena seem to ensue from the more complex interactions that take place in the brain.

© 1987 Optical Society of America

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