Fairy Circle Mystery Solved By Computational Modelling Fairy circles are mysterious barren patches of land that are surrounded by healthy vegetation. The circles are common in many parts of the world but particularly in the arid grasslands of southern Africa where they range in size from 2 metres to 10 metres across (see picture above). Plant biologists know these circles are stable having watched them over periods of decades. So these structures are clearly no accident. Indeed, exactly why fairy circles appear is something of a mystery. In particular, nobody has been able to explain why the patches are circular and not some other shape.
The Dispossessed The Dispossessed: An Ambiguous Utopia is a 1974 utopian science fiction novel by Ursula K. Le Guin, set in the same fictional universe as that of The Left Hand of Darkness (the Hainish Cycle). The book won the Nebula Award for Best Novel in 1974, won both the Hugo and Locus Awards in 1975, and received a nomination for the John W. Online Computer Science Courses In its purest form, computer science is the research and development of technology that solves specific problems. Computer science has brought the world smart phones, GPS systems, the gaming industry and tablet computing, along with technological developments that assist government, industry and medicine. In addition to creating new technology, computer scientists also make improvements to existing technology and study the ways computers can make our lives easier. One can learn more about this field of study through several online computer science courses. As with any branch of science, computer scientists perform research that establishes new information.
Latest Posts The other day, I was scanning the shelves at the half-price bookstore, and came across a book entitled Imagine What the World Could be in the 21st Century: Visions of a Better Future from Leading American Thinkers, edited by Marianne Williamson. It was published in the millennium year 2000 and contained about 40 short articles by well-known contemporary authors who had been invited to share their personal visions of the future. As I skimmed through the pages, I realized that this was not just another book about social and environmental...
What Do Ants Know That We Don't? Ever notice how ant colonies so successfully explore and exploit resources in the world … to find food at 4th of July picnics, for example? You may find it annoying. But as an ecologist who studies ants and collective behavior, I think it’s intriguing — especially the fact that it’s all done without any central control.
COMPLEXITY TIME BOMB: When systems get out of control by Dirk Helbing Financial crises, terrorism, conflict, crime: it turns out, the conventional ‘medicines’ to tackle global problems are often inefficient or even counter-productive. The reason for this is surprisingly simple: we approach these problems with an outdated understanding of our world. While the world might still look similar to how it has looked for a long time, I will argue that it has, in fact, inconspicuously but fundamentally changed over time. Ansible An ansible is a fictional machine capable of instantaneous or superluminal communication. Typically it is depicted as a lunch-box-sized object with some combination of microphone, speaker, keyboard and display. It can send and receive messages to and from a corresponding device over any distance whatsoever with no delay. Ansibles occur as plot devices in science fiction literature. Origin The word ansible was coined by Ursula K.
Secret-Knock Gumball Machine One of the best things about exhibiting at Maker Faire is giving attendees a challenge. For the 2010 Maker Faire Bay Area, I decided to combine a past project of mine, a door lock that opens only when you give a secret knock, with a standard crowd pleaser: candy. The result was this Secret-Knock Gumball Machine, which tempted and tested the crowds at Maker Faire to guess the right rhythm and receive a treat. Since the knock was not terribly secret (I happily handed out hints), it distributed hundreds of gumballs over the event’s two days. The “secret” knock defaults to the famous “Shave and a Haircut” rhythm, but you can program custom knocks by simply pressing a button and knocking a new pattern.
Complexity and Social Networks Blog 13 April 2014 Events/Announcements Workshop on Github on April 15 at noon (CCNR @ Northeastern) Please join us for this workshop on Github. Computer Vision Reveals The Remarkable Secret of Flocking Watch a flock of starlings for a few minutes and it’s easy to see its remarkable behaviour. The birds seem to move in synchrony even though they can be separated by the width of the flock itself. Somehow the movement of birds on opposite sides of the flock must be correlated even though they can only reasonably communicate with their nearest neighbours. Just how this happens has been the subject of much fascination. One way to tackle this problem is to simulate flocking behaviour on a computer, compare the simulation with the actual flocking behaviour and thereby attempt to explain it.
About NECSI The New England Complex Systems Institute (NECSI) is an independent academic research and educational institution with students, postdoctoral fellows and faculty. In addition to the in-house research team, NECSI has co-faculty, students and affiliates from MIT, Harvard, Brandeis and other universities nationally and internationally. NECSI has been instrumental in the development of complex systems science and its applications.
Superluminal communication Superluminal communication is the hypothetical process by which one might send information at faster-than-light (FTL) speeds. The scientific consensus is that faster-than-light communication is not possible and to date superluminal communication has not been achieved in any experiment. Some theories and experiments include: If wormholes are possible, then ordinary subluminal methods of communication could be sent through them to achieve superluminal transmission speeds.
Charlieplexing LEDs with an AVR ATmega328 (or Arduino) Charlieplexing is an ingenius method for controlling many LEDs without using many microcontroller pins. You can turn on or off one LED at a time. To light more than one LED at a time, you can scan the LEDs by turning a sequence of them on and off really fast. Introduction to Dynamical Systems and Chaos from Complexity Explorer Aleta Duvall completed this course. I appreciated the structured approach to the course material and the painstaking development of foundational concepts. Dr. Feldman presents the course in an informal, across-the-desk manner. Each lecture feels like you are experiencing an individual tutoring session during office hours.