Brodmann has pioneered structural brain mapping. He considered functional and pathological criteria for defining cortical areas in addition to cytoarchitecture. Starting from this idea of structural-functional relationships at the level of cortical areas, we will argue that the cortical architecture is more heterogeneous than Brodmann's map suggests. A triple-scale concept is proposed that includes repetitive modular-like structures and micro- and meso-maps. Criteria for defining a cortical area will be discussed, considering novel preparations, imaging and optical methods, 2D and 3D quantitative architectonics, as well as high-performance computing including analyses of big data. These new approaches contribute to an understanding of the brain on multiple levels and challenge the traditional, mosaic-like segregation of the cerebral cortex.
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