Big Sur

Last week, Mriganka Sur, the  Paul E Newton Professor of Neuroscience and the Head, Dept of Brain and Cognitive Science at MIT (The Massachusetts Institute of Technology) in Cambridge, Mass. was in Hyderabad, and we were fortunate to have him deliver one of our Distinguished Lectures, on “Brains, Minds and Machines”. 

The talk was, in a word, electrifying. The Raman auditorium was overflowing (we really have to get larger auditoriums, and ones that are more well equipped audio-wise…) and many students were sitting in the aisles, many more were standing. But it was well worth it,  the talk itself was the star. It was delivered superbly. It was passionate. It was articulate. It had content that was easy enough for the non-specialist to appreciate, and there was enough  detail and material in it to make it quite clear even to specialists that one was listening to a master of the game.

Mriganka Sur FRS is amongst the most celebrated neuroscientists of the world today. He did his B.Tech. from IIT Kanpur, and subsequently moved to Vanderbilt University where he got his Ph D. In addition to being Head of the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, at MIT he is also Director of the Simons Initiative on Autism and Brain.

To have him visit the University- and so early in the year- was a special treat. I hope that it augurs well for our academic activities in 2012!

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2 thoughts on “Big Sur

  1. Sir, can we have such talks videotaped in the future, so that people like us who fail to attend due to various reasons, are also benefited?

  2. What you have written about Mriganka Sur’s lecture is true. I want to bring to your notice that another very important lecture on science was given by Abha Sur, who is the author of Dispersed Radiance. Her talk focused on trials and tribulations, that were faced by three women scientists, who worked with C. V. Raman. However, she elaborated in a very lucid manner how social location of a scientist influences the nature of his/her research. It is a very rare opportunity to hear a scientist talking about intimate connection between science research and social background of that particular scientist. I thank Women studies center and University authorities for giving such an opportunity to student community.

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