Animals can rapidly detect changes, characterize, and respond to a constantly changing environment. The richness of this milieu is reflected in the variety of dynamic patterns that neuronal networks can generate. The goal of our research is to study how cellular and network properties constrain the generation of these spatiotemporal patterns and determine their functional role. We addresses these broad goals within the context of two paradigmatic systems in neuroscience, the hippocampal network and the olfactory system. We construct and simulate detailed and idealized models of neuronal networks to understand the peculiarities of these systems while also abstracting broad principles underlying information processing in the brain.