Monday, August 08, 2005

Remote controlled woman

Japanese researchers have pioneered a new steering system that can be applied to other people. By applying a current to the muscle behind the ear, researchers can confuse the inner ear's system for balance and control.

Watch the video
Read the full article at Forbes

Art & Artificial Life International Competition: VIDA 8.0

I just received the call for the VIDA competition. Prize money of 40 000 euros is at stake...

"VIDA 8.0 is the seventh edition of this international competition, created to reward excellence in artistic creativity in the field of artificial life.

In previous editions, prizes have been awarded to autonomous entities able to bring us pleasure (Tickle 2.0, Tickle Salon 5.0), engage us in irrational conversations (Head 3.0) or invade our social space (Cour des Miracles 2.0); virtual ecologies that evolve with user participation (Autopoiesis 3.0, Electric Sheep and Remain in Light 4.0), autonomous systems..."

Go to their site

Friday, August 05, 2005

Filming viral attacks

Wired recently reported about the work of Xiaowei Zhuang, a Chinese woman researching in the USA. She is looking into how viruses attack living cells, using laser-enhanced microscopes to view them.

Read the full story here.

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Google Earth

"Google Earth combines satellite imagery, maps and the power of Google Search to put the world's geographic information at your fingertips," explains the Google Earth website. It builds on a combination of mapping, GIS and satellite imagery to build a comprehensive 3d interface that covers the globe. Both useful and frightening at the same time...

Google Earth site

Art science crossover: Joseph Nechtval

A true rennaissance man, Joseph Nechtval marries interests in art, technology and media. Some of his work involves generating pieces of art using robots.

One of his recent art exhibitions: Viral Counter Attack
An interview with him: click here.
His bio: click here

Thanks to the Biota list for this info.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Kids and virtual worlds

An interesting approach to education from a teacher involved in a portal I work on - Linda Giannini, a teacher, educational researcher and scholar, explains her work with 3-5 year old children, using virtual worlds. The work as it involves children interacting in tri-dimensional chatspaces with adults, who are willing to "virtually" create – with 3D constructions – the children’s desires.

Kids and Virtual Worlds - full article

Science education portal:

Download a paper that Karl Sarnow and I wrote about Xplora here.

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

World Community Grid

IBM have launched this project to make GRID technology available for many different research goals. One of the first looks at human proteome folding.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

" is the largest experiment to try and produce a forecast of the climate in the 21st century." It uses GRID computing, so that the climate model is run on your computer during downtime - it runs by using your computer's processor power when you aren't. This one runs a model of global climate, first processing through past data and then moving into climate forecasts.

Darwin Pond

"Darwin Pond is an imaginary gene pool, a primordial puddle of genetic surprises. More technically, Darwin Pond is an Artificial Life Simulation: a virtual world exhibiting the emergence of life-like behaviors. But it's more than just a fun and informative thing to watch, you can participate in this artificial life simulation by building scenarios and setting up experiments," say the creators, Jeffrey Ventrella and Brian Dodd together with Rocket Science Games.

Visit the Darwin Pond site, with free download.

Biots - an ALife Java applet by A. Joseph Rheaume

More fun with evolutionary algorithms. This time the interface has a bit of a Nintendo feel, with mushrooms, emus and other strange creatures evolving together.


As Ariel Dolan says on his site, "eFloys (evolving Floys), are social, territorial, evolving artificial life creatures, implemented in Java.

They belong to the flocking Alife creatures variety, sharing with them the social tendency to stick together, and the lifelike emergent behavior which is based on a few simple, local rules. They differ from most other flocking Alife animals by having the following properties:

  • Territorialism (they defend their territory against intruders)
  • Potential individualism (each can possess a different personality)
  • Ability to evolve (using a Genetic Algorithm code)."
So, they embody a number of scientific principles, but they are also rather fun to play with!

Take a look here.

Monday, April 25, 2005

Atom Flowers

Take a look at the high valency atoms to see some really beautiful diagrams.
They illustrate the orbits of different particles, and strangely enough, resemble Tibetan mandelas.