The distinctive feature of brains such as the one we own is their uncanny ability to create maps.
—Antonio Damasio, from Self Comes to Mind: Constructing the Conscious Brain
Imagine yourself sitting on a bench in your favorite park. Your eyes are focused on a long story in the newspaper. Maybe you are reading it on your tablet computer, or maybe you are old-fashioned, as I am, and prefer the newsprint version. No matter. Either way, the world around you blurs and becomes unimportant. The storyline flows. You feel enthralled. You barely notice a group of children playing a few yards away. Your mind is off and wandering in a better place, chasing fleeting words.
Suddenly, you notice a movement in the corner of ...