Leslie McTavish's blog

Brain Cells fused with computer chips

Projects: 
'The line between living organisms and machines has just become a whole lot blurrier. European researchers have developed "neuro-chips" in which living brain cells and silicon circuits are coupled together.' I heard this headline on the way in to school yesterday morning and dug up this link to it. Sounds pretty exciting.. but I don't know enough about neurons to imagine how they would intereact with the electronics. If anyone has an idea of how this might work, could you fill me in?? Also, I thought one of the pictures was interesting.. have a look at the snail neurons.. is that why netlogo calls them turtles??

Just another variation

Projects: 
Here is my updated version that allows up to four ants and has the option to halt the process when any two ants cross paths. The display will restart by pressing go again. A couple of (I thought) interesting points: The initial coordinates are set up to match the ones that Kathy drew our attention to. This model is difffernt from Kathy's though in that it is not set up to be paralell like hers is. The result is much the same effect, except for two differences. 1) The internal pattern that is left in the centre when the ants start to move out in a circle are mirror images. 2) Because my world is larger, the ants don't wrap and bump into each other, and so they don't cycle.

Netlogo and the ant

Projects: 
I've found something that I found interesting with the ant. Given 2 ants and enough time, more times than not (I think I've tried it 4 or 5 times and it's only failed once) the two ants will eventually retrace their steps back to the beginning, erasing everything they have done, and then start all over again. Curious, no? Perhaps I never ran Langton's ant long enough to see of this would happen with his one ant..

First impression

Projects: 
I'm still not quite sure what this is all about, but a couple of things interest me. One is the prospect of finding relationships between systems where none were thought to exist. The other is modelling the game of life. Can ever be predictable? It seems to always get to a state where life stablizes, or dies out altogether. Are these the only two possibilities and what does this mean?