Background on this week's stories:
#1. Mapping the brain''s own O''Hare
Olaf Sporns, co-author of the study in question (press release here) is no stranger to the creation of high-resolution maps of activity in the brain, having previously generated interesting results on all the electrical chatter present in the "resting" brain.
This time around, Dr. Sporns et al. discovered that the brain has a "central clearinghouse" of electrical activity that, as The New York Times put it, "provides a striking demonstration of how new imaging techniques focused on the brain's white matter—the connections between cells, rather than the neurons themselves—are filling in a dimension of human brain function that has been all but dark." (Other coverage of the finding can be found at Technology Review and National Geographic.)
Could the discovery of the brain's "activity hub" bear on previous findings that the aging brain is less connected than the younger brain? Only more research will tell.
#2. Next stop: Never?
Like a meme heard round the world, we first spotted the train that never stops on Carectomy, which was only the latest in a long chain of blog pickups stretching from BoingBoing through DVICE and Deputy Dog, arriving at the only mainstream coverage of the phenomenon so far, at Taiwan Headlines.
Details are sketchy, because the inventor, despite having an honorary doctorate, is more of a dreamer than an engineer.