|Title||From trash to treasure: learning about brain images through multimodality|
|Tag(s)||EMCA, Multimodal Analysis, Science & Technology Studies, Images|
Cognitive Neuroscientists use functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) technology to generate digital images of the human brain. An fMRI image, as a ﬁnal product of the scientiﬁc work, does not document movements and sounds that were present when such an image was recorded. Yet, a focus on actual moments of scientiﬁc practice reveals that such forgotten elements of practice can play important roles in understanding and knowledge acquisition. The multimodal interaction among scientists and digital screens shows how movements of the experimental subject and the scanner noise are performed to make images meaningful. Moreover, it suggests that the phenomena whose detection is crucial for a scientiﬁc reading of the brain images, such as motion artifacts, become visible as a result of coordination of various semiotic modalities (i.e., images, talk, body movements, gesture, etc.).