Sonification and Visualization of Neural Data
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This paper describes a method for integrating audio and visual displays to explore the activity of neurons in the brain. The motivation is twofold: to help understand how populations of neurons respond during cognitive tasks and in turn explore how signals from the brain might be used to create musical sounds. Experimental data was drawn from electrophysiological recordings of individual neurons in awake behaving monkeys, and an interface was designed to allow the user to step through a visual task as seen by the monkey along with concurrent sonification and visualization of activity from a population of recorded neurons. Data from two experimental paradigms illustrating different functional properties of neurons in the prefrontal cortex during attention and decisionmaking tasks are presented. The current system provides an accessible way to learn about how neural activity underlies cognitive functions and serves as a preliminary framework to explore both analytical and aesthetic dimensions of audiovisual representations of the data.