Want to know just how prevalent technology has become in our lives? Now even lab mice get Quake-derived virtual reality playgrounds to navigate instead of their old school wooden mazes. In all honesty, this appears a significant and praiseworthy advancement, as the Princeton team have succeeded in mapping brain activity right down to the cellular level, with real-time tracking of single neurons now possible. The Orwellian-looking setup above is necessary in order to keep the mouse's head immobile, and thus capable of being studied, while the animal moves around and its brain performs motion-related tasks. Go past the break to see a schematic of the scanner and a quite unmissable video of it in action.

[Via Switched]


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