Noyce Conference Room
  US Mountain Time
L. Mahadevan

Our campus is closed to the public for this event.

Abstract: Super-organisms  solve complex physiological problems collectively, sans plan or planner, on scales much larger than the individual.  Motivated by observations in the field and in the lab, I will describe how different orders of social insects - termites, bees and ants - actively regulate their micro-environment by constructing and deconstructing complex functional architectures. By linking physics and behavior on multiple scales using local sensing and action mediated by global fields, these examples point to a kind of embodied intelligence. To synthesize these complex collective behaviors in-vitro, I will close by describing our experiments using simple robots that sharpen some questions raised a long time ago by Tinbergen, Turing and others. 


L. MahadevanL. MahadevanProfessor at Harvard University
SFI Host: 
Sid Redner

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