Did These Researchers Just Create an Autistic Computer Program?

The computational metaphor of an artificial neural network can grant basic insight into the workings of the brain — but scientific insight? ANNs are just now reaching the level of sophistication where they might be able to be used as a tool by scientists, allowing them to actually predict how the brain will react to changes in its structure. Now, an amazing new study claims to have done just that. When neuroscientists simulated one theorized cause of autism in an artificial neural network, that simulation began exhibiting recognizably autism-like behavior.

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