Oscillatory Model of Short Term Memory

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 4 (NIPS 1991)

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David Horn, Marius Usher


We investigate a model in which excitatory neurons have dynamical thresh(cid:173) olds which display both fatigue and potentiation. The fatigue property leads to oscillatory behavior. It is responsible for the ability of the model to perform segmentation, i.e., decompose a mixed input into staggered oscillations of the activities of the cell-assemblies (memories) affected by it. Potentiation is responsible for sustaining these staggered oscillations after the input is turned off, i.e. the system serves as a model for short term memory. It has a limited STM capacity, reminiscent of the magical number 7 ± 2.