By Gordon Pask, Warren S. McCulloch
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Additional info for An Approach to Cybernetics
The first level of regulation keeps the mixture of gases in the alveoli of the lungs at approximately 17 per cent oxygen, 6 per cent carbon dioxide. 1. 1. 1. 1. per minute. The regulation is bound up in a whole chain of systems concerned with transporting oxygen and carbon dioxide. When oxygen passes through the alveoli and into the blood stream most of it is carried in chemical combination with haemo- • 76 AN APPROACH TO CYBERNETICS I globin, a substance which exists only inside the red blood corpuscles.
Most of the bicarbonate ion passes into the blood plasma where it is neutralized by acid groups on the plasma proteins. Hence the reactions inside a corpuscle placed in oxygen-deficient surroundmgs are: . ' Water-Bicarbonate + Acid (becomes bound by the plasma protein in blood) (HB) OX + Acid--HHB) RE + Oxygen (to tissues) ....... (vi) Now all this depends upon a chain of systems, whereby the blood is kept in equilibrium with metabolic activities and the blood itself, corpuscles, plasma, protein and so on, is maintained intact.
For each receptive field, networks among the bipolar and ganglionic neurones compute the value of four distinct attributes: (i) Presence of sharp edge of an object imaged upon the receptors. (ii) Convexity of dark object. (iii) Movement of an edge. (iv) Overall dimming. These attributes have significance to the frog, for example (Ii) is almost perfectly a bug detector (and he eats bugs), whilst (iv) indicates a predator. The frog sees his world in this reference frame, not as patches of black and white.