Similarities Between Monkey Business And Human Business, ScienceDaily
Excerpts: Little attention has been paid to whether systematic economic biases such as risk-aversion are learned behaviors -- and thus easily ameliorated through market incentives -- or biologically based, arising in novel situations and in spite of experience. (...) Yale researchers extend this question across species, exploring how a colony of capuchin monkeys responds to economic decisions. They found that monkeys doing business -- including trading and gambling -- behave in ways that closely mirror our own behavioral inclinations. (...)
Social Science: The Pleasures And Pains Of Information, Science
Excerpts: The idea that people derive pleasure and pain directly from information, rather than from any material benefits that the information procures, has diverse implications for decision-making. As highlighted by Berns et al., utility derived from anticipating future outcomes can have a major impact on intertemporal choices--decisions involving costs and benefits that extend over time. The standard economic account of intertemporal choice predicts that people will generally want to expedite pleasant outcomes and delay unpleasant ones (4).
Neurobiological Substrates Of Dread, Science
Excerpts: Given the choice of waiting for an adverse outcome or getting it over with quickly, many people choose the latter. Theoretical models of decision-making have assumed that this occurs because there is a cost to waitingˇXi.e., dread. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging, we measured the neural responses to waiting for a cutaneous electric shock. Some individuals dreaded the outcome so much that, when given a choice, they preferred to receive more voltage rather than wait.
- Source: Neurobiological Substrates Of Dread, Gregory S. Berns, Jonathan Chappelow, Milos Cekic, Caroline F. Zink, Giuseppe Pagnoni, Megan E. Martin-Skurski, Science : 754-758., 06/05/05
Abstract: Self-organization is bound to greatly affect computer science. The simplicity and yet power of self-organized models will allow researchers to propose efficient solutions to problems never before thought possible to be addressed efficiently. The published works in the field clearly demonstrate the potential of this approach. This paper first reviews a number of interesting self-organization phenomena found in nature, then it discusses their potential applicability in several computer science application scenarios.
Microsoft Touts Open Research: Information Sharing Vital To Innovation, vnunet.com
Excerpts: Microsoft Research has talked up the way that its research arm is sharing information with the educational community at a company event at its Silicon Valley campus. Working with universities is vital, argued Roy Levin, director of Microsoft Research in Silicon Valley, because academia is driving innovation. Microsoft researchers also depend on review by their peers in universities for quality control. "Microsoft depends on innovative technology," said Levin. "If we don't advance the state of the art, we are not advancing innovation." (...).
The Map In The Brain: Grid Cells May Help Us Navigate, Science
Excerpts: A newfound class of neurons enables the brain to perform complex spatial navigation--and may even help form memories
(...) Moser and his colleagues, including his wife May-Britt Moser and postdoctoral researchers Torkel Hafting and Marianne Fyhn, let rats roam freely in large enclosures while recording the firing of individual neurons from this cortical region. The neurons fired at distinct places: If plotted on a map of the enclosure, the firing locations of each neuron formed a triangular grid. "It's a lattice that's repeated over and over again," says Edvard Moser. Consequently, he and his team at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim have dubbed these previously unknown neurons "grid cells."
Lesbians Respond Differently To "Human Pheromones," Study Says, National Geographic News
Lesbian women respond differently than straight women when exposed to suspected sexual chemicals, according to a new brain imaging study.
Brain scans depict activity in the brains of heterosexual women (left), lesbian women (center), and heterosexual men (right) when exposed to potential human pheromones AND and EST.
Image courtesy PNAS
The finding builds on previous research that suggest that gay men responded in a way more similar to heterosexual women than heterosexual men when exposed to a synthetic chemical.
Why Consumers Seek Value At The Top And Bottom Of Markets, Knowledge@Wharton
Excerpts: "In the U.S. and around the world, the consumer markets are bifurcating into two fast-growing pools of spending," writes author Michael J. Silverstein in his new book, Treasure Hunt: Inside the Mind of the New Consumer. "At the high end, consumers are trading up, paying a premium for high-quality, emotionally rich, high-margin products and services. At the low end, consumers are relentlessly trading down, spending as little as possible to buy basic, low-cost goods and services." Between both piles lies a vast range of mediocre, medium-range products that Silverstein claims is doomed to decline.
Cyclic Universe Could Explain Cosmic Balancing Act, Nature News
A bouncing universe that expands and then shrinks every trillion years or so could explain one of the most puzzling problems in cosmology: how we can exist at all.
Why is the energy pushing apart the Universe so small? Maybe because it's much older than we thought.
If this explanation, proposed in Science1 by Paul Steinhardt at Princeton University, New Jersey, and Neil Turok at the University of Cambridge, UK, seems slightly preposterous, that can't really be held against it. Astronomical observations over the past decade have shown that "we live in a preposterous universe", says cosmologist Sean Carroll of the University of Chicago. "It's our job to make sense of it," he says.
Linear Dunes On Titan, Science
Excerpts: Land forms and deposits created by the dynamic interactions between granular material and airflow occur on several planetary bodies, including Earth, Mars, and Venus. Recent orbital image data indicate that such aeolian (wind-produced) landforms and deposits also occur on Titan, as originally predicted by Greeley (1). As reported on page 724 of this issue, Lorenz and colleagues have analyzed high-resolution radar image data of Titan and conclude that extensive areas of dark linear features are directly comparable to large linear desert dune fields on Earth (2).
Thoroughly Modern Spine Supported Human Ancestor, Science News
Bones from a spinal column discovered at a nearly 1.8-million-year-old site in central Asia support the controversial possibility that ancient human ancestors spoke to one another. (...)
WIDE OPEN. A recently discovered Homo erectus vertebra from central Asia (left) displays a larger spinal cord canal than does a corresponding bone (right) from a skeleton that had been found in Kenya.
"The Dmanisi spinal column falls within the human range and would have comfortably accommodated a modern human spinal cord," Meyer says. Moreover, the fossil vertebrae would have provided ample structural support for the respiratory muscles needed to articulate words, he asserts. Although it's impossible to confirm that our prehistoric ancestors talked, Meyer notes, H. erectus at Dmanisi faced no respiratory limitations on speech.
Dolphins 'Have Their Own Names', BBC News
Dolphins communicate like humans by calling each other by name, scientists in Fife have found.
Dolphins were monitored in Sarasota Bay off Florida (Image: Randall Wells)
The mammals are able to recognise themselves and other members of the same species as individuals with separate identities.
St Andrews University researchers studying in Florida discovered bottlenose dolphins used names rather than sound to identify each other.
The three-year-study was funded by the Royal Society of London.
Dr Vincent Janik, of the Sea Mammal Unit at St Andrews University, said they conducted the research on wild dolphins.
Nice Guys Do Finish First In Lizards' Evolutionary Race, Innovations-report
Excerpts: Getting beaten up by the neighborhood bully so your buddy can spend time with the ladies may seem like a rough life, but that strategy not only works for some lizards, it also gives a fascinating peek into hard-wired altruism in evolutionary biology. Side-blotched lizards spend their year on earth looking to reproduce, and their strategies have lessons about evolution. An article (...) provides the first genetic evidence of a trait that the animals recognize and use - even if that trait seems on the surface to be counterproductive. "Cooperation is a tricky thing in terms of evolutionary theory," said (...).
Excerpts: (...) is a step closer to the next generation of treatments to combat disease, after publishing a comprehensive analysis of the human and mouse transcriptomes. A senior member (...) said transcriptome describes all of the information read from the genome by a cell at any given time. "Essentially, we need to understand the language that cells use to read DNA in order to know how processes in the body are controlled," (...). This new model may help explain why some organisms, such as humans, are much more complex than simple organisms such as worms, despite having a similar number of genes. (...)
Despite Mutated Gene, Mouse Circadian Clock Keeps On Ticking, Science
Excerpts: If you opened up a clock and took out the most important-looking cog in its works, how well do you suppose the clock would work? A team of neurobiologists recently tried an analogous experiment with the biological clocks of mice, knocking out a gene thought to encode a crucial part of the molecular machinery that generates circadian rhythms. To their great surprise, the clock didn't stop.
Editor's Note: That is a nice example of the difference between a complicated machine and a complex adaptive system and its degeneracy.
Robotic Tentacles Get To Grips With Tricky Objects, New Scientist
Robotic "tentacles" that can grasp and grapple with a wide variety of objects have been developed by US researchers.
The robotic tentacles have been attached to Talon robots, which are used for reconnaissance and bomb disposal (Image: Clemson University)
Most robots rely on mechanical gripping jaws that have difficulty grabbing large or irregularly shaped objects. Replacing these with tentacle-like manipulators could make robots more nimble and flexible, say the scientists.
The tentacle-like manipulators, known as "Octarms", resemble an octopus's limb or an elephant's trunk. They were developed through a project called OCTOR (sOft robotiC manipulaTORs), which involves several US universities and is funded by the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).
Babybot Takes First Steps, IST Results
Excerpts: BabyBot, a robot modelled on the torso of a two year-old child, is helping researchers take the first, tottering steps towards understanding human perception, and could lead to the development of machines that can perceive and interact with their environment. The researchers used BabyBot to test a model of the human sense of 'presence', a combination of senses like sight, hearing and touch. The work could have enormous applications in robotics, artificial intelligence (AI) and machine perception. (...)
Tainted By Cleanser: Antimicrobial Agent Persists In Sludge, Science News
Excerpts: About 76 percent of a commonly used antimicrobial agent exits sewage-treatment plants as a component of the sludge that's often used as a farm fertilizer, according to the first study to track the chemical through a typical plant. The finding raises questions as to the ultimate fate of the antimicrobial in the environment, the study's authors say.
U.S. manufacturers add 500,000 to 1 million pounds of the chemical triclocarban each year to personal-care products, such as antimicrobial soaps. Past toxicological studies have linked the chemical to decreases in birthweight and survival in rats and rabbits (...).
Spreading of Infectious Diseases On Heterogeneous Populations: Multi-type Network Approach, arXiv
Excerpts: I study the spreading of infectious diseases on heterogeneous populations. I represent the population structure by a contact-graph where vertices represent agents and edges represent disease transmission channels among them. (...) I discuss the impact of intervention strategies to halt epidemic outbreaks. This work provides both a qualitative understanding and tools to obtain quantitative predictions for the spreading dynamics on heterogeneous populations.
Climatology: A Tempestuous Birth For Hurricane Climatology, Science
Excerpts: From those weather records, the meteorologists extracted storm climatologies, statistical histories of storm behavior that could be searched for any change over the decades. Unexpectedly, they found a surge in tropical cyclone intensity--and if it continued under global warming, they concluded, it would noticeably amplify the destruction in coming decades. In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, those analyses were enough to spark a highly public and sometimes raucous new field: hurricane climatology.
Quantum Optics: A New Way To Beat The Limits On Shrinking Transistors?, Science
Excerpts: Physicists know that, in theory, they can beat the diffraction limit through quantum weirdness. They split a beam of light, send the two halves on paths of different lengths, and bring them back together at the surface of the target. The recombining beams can interfere with one another to make a pattern of bright and dark regions. The trick is to create a quantum connection called "entanglement" between a pair of photons traveling the two paths so that the duo acts like a single photon of twice the energy and half the wavelength. The interfering beams can then write details onto the photoresist that are half the size of the diffraction limit. Entangling more photons produces smaller features still.
Complex Challenges: Global Terrorist Network
The Incredible Shrinking Cia, CNN
Excerpts: (...), officials in Negroponte's [Director of National Intelligence, DNI, Ed.] office have insisted they're not gutting CIA's role, but are instead making the overall intelligence community, with between 80,000 and 100,000 employees at 16 agencies, more efficient. But there's no question that analytic talent is being sapped for DNI-run entities such as the NCTC [National Counter Terrorism Center, Ed.], with a planned staff (including analysts and others) somewhere over 400. (...) The DNI has already taken some 90 analysts from the CIA. Now, he is siphoning off over two dozen more for NCTC from the CIA, one source tells TIME.
Effects Of Terrorism On Attitudes And Ideological Orientation, Euro. J. Soc. Psych.
Excerpts: A quasi-experimental study on the effects of terrorism on racial prejudice and ideological orientation is presented. Two independent samples were contacted before and after the Islamic terrorist attacks against railways in Madrid (11 March 2004). Anti-Arab and anti-Semite prejudices, authoritarianism and ideological orientations (liberal against conservative) were evaluated. Results showed that those terrorist attacks provoked changes in a reactionary and conservative direction: stronger prejudices not only against the target group (Arabs), but against another uninvolved group (Jewish); an increase in authoritarianism; stronger attachment to traditional conservative values, and a reduction in the attachment to liberal values. (...)
Terrorism A Complex, Multidimensional, Growing Threat At Global Level, International News Network
Excerpts: Terrorism is a complex, multidimensional and growing threat at global level, therefore, a comprehensive strategy that addresses underlying causes like poverty, underdevelopment, and socio-economic inequities need to be formulated.
A series of expert-level meetings and workshops may be held by SAARC [South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation, Ed] Member States to arrive at such a strategy. This was stated by Syed Kamal Shah, Secretary Interior while leading Pakistani delegation at the first SAARC meeting of Secretaries of Interior here on Wednesday.
He said that terrorism undoubtedly violates and threatens the foundations of human society and undermines the fundamental rules and core principles both of the SAARC Charter and United Nations.
Links & Snippets
- Simple Models of Assortment through Environmental Feedback, John W. Pepper, SFI Working Papers, DOI: SFI-WP 06-04-013
- Planetary Science: The Primordial Porridge, Bernard Marty, 06/05/05, Science : 706-707.
- Environmental Monitoring by Wireless Communication Networks, Hagit Messer, Artem Zinevich, Pinhas Alpert, 06/05/05, Science : 713. A real-time map of rainfall intensity can be recovered by measuring the attenuation in signals from cell phones in a network.
- The Embryonic Vertebrate Heart Tube Is a Dynamic Suction Pump, Arian S. Forouhar, Michael Liebling, Anna Hickerson, Abbas Nasiraei-Moghaddam, Huai-Jen Tsai, Jay R. Hove, Scott E. Fraser, Mary E. Dickinson, Morteza Gharib, 06/05/05, Science : 751-753. Imaging shows that the embryonic, unchambered vertebrate heart develops as a fluid dynamic pump, not a peristaltic pump as had been assumed.
- Conjunctive Representation of Position, Direction, and Velocity in Entorhinal Cortex, Francesca Sargolini, Marianne Fyhn, Torkel Hafting, Bruce L. McNaughton, Menno P. Witter, May-Britt Moser, Edvard I. Moser, 06/05/05, Science: 758-762. In rats, one region of the cortex contains cells that code the animal's position, head direction, and speed, and may integrate this information to provide a sense of its spatial location.
- Modelling Dispersal Of A Temperate Insect In A Changing Climate, R. J. Walters, M. Hassall, M. G. Telfer, G. M. Hewitt, J. P. Palutikof, 2006/05/02, Proceedings: Biological Sciences, DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2006.3542
- Darwin's Dilemma: The Realities Of The Cambrian 'Explosion', S. C. Morris, 2006/05/03, Philosophical Transactions: Biological Sciences, DOI: 10.1098/rstb.2006.1846
- Hormones May Affect How Brain Listens, Emory Study Finds, 2006/05/03, ScienceDaily & Emory University Health Sciences Center
- Intel Takes On One Laptop Per Child Project: $400 Eduwise Laptop Designed To Provide, T. Sanders, 2006/05/04, vnunet.com
- Climate, Energy And Diversity, A. Clarke, K. J. Gaston, 2006/05/04, Proceedings: Biological Sciences, DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2006.3545
- Does IQ Drop With Age, Or Does Something Else Impact Intelligence?, 2006/05/04, ScienceDaily & Case Western Reserve University
- The Brain's Motivation Station, 2006/05/04, ScienceDaily & Cell Press
- 'Virtual' Intimacies? Families Communicating Across Transnational Contexts, R. Wilding, Apr. 2006, online 2006/02/28, Global Networks, DOI: 10.1111/j.1471-0374.2006.00137.x
- Player's Positional Dependence Of Fractal Behaviors In A Soccer Game, S. Kim - srkimkyonggi.ac.kr, Mar. 2006, Fractals [Complex Geometry, Patterns, and Scaling in Nature and Society], DOI: 10.1142/S0218348X06003003
- Scared To Death Or Scared To Love? Terror Management Theory And Close Relationships Seeking, M. miej - msmiejaapple.phils.uj.edu.pl, M. Kaask, M. Adamczyk, Mar.-Apr. 2006, Online 2006/03/07, European Journal of Social Psychology, DOI: 10.1002/ejsp.301
- What Have We Been Priming All These Years? On The Development, Mechanisms, And Ecology Of Nonconscious Social Behavior, J. A. Bargh - john.barghyale.edu, Mar.-Apr. 2006, Online 2006/03/07, European Journal of Social Psychology, DOI: 10.1002/ejsp.336
Ralph Abraham on Complexity Digest, , Calcutta, India, 05/12/27
- An Afternoon with Michael Crichton, Washington, 05/11/06
Illuminating the Shadow of the Future, Ann Arbor, Mi 05/09/23-25
Open Network of Centres of Excellence in Complex Systems - Brainstorming Meeting, Paris, France 05/09/19-23
Complexity, Science & Society Conference 2005, U. Liverpool, UK 2005/09/11-14
ECAL 2005 - VIIIth European Conference on Artificial Life,
Canterbury, Kent, UK 2005/09/5-9
T. Irene Sanders, Executive Director and Founder, The Washington Center for Complexity & Public Policy, 05/08/27, QuickTime video (10:38 min), Podcast
- North American Society for the Psychology of Sport and Physical Activity 2005 Conference, Virtual Conference Network, St. Pete's Beach, Florida, 05/06/09-11
- Understanding Complex Systems - Computational Complexity and Bioinformatics, Virtual Conference Network, Urbana-Champaign, Il, UIUC, 05/05/16-19
- Nonlinearity, Fluctuations, and Complexity, with a celebration of the 65th birthday of Gregoire Nicolis. , Complexity Session, Universite' Libre de Bruxelles, Brussels, Belgium, 05/03/16
- World Economic Forum , Davos, Switzerland, 05/01/26-30
1st European Conference on Complex Systems, Torino, Italy, 04/12/5-7
From Autopoiesis to Neurophenomenology: A Tribute to Francisco Varela (1946-2001), Paris, France, 2004/06/18-20
Evolutionary Epistemology, Language, and Culture, Brussels, Belgium, 04/05/26-28
International Conference on Complex Systems 2004, Boston, 04/05/16-21
Nonlinear Dynamics And Chaos: Lab Demonstrations, Strogatz, Steven H., Internet-First University Press, 1994
- CERN Webcast Service, Streamed videos of Archived Lectures and Live Events
- Dean LeBaron's Archive of Daily Video Commentary, Ongoing Since February 1998
- Edge Videos
5th Intl Joint Conf on Autonomous Agents And Multiagent Systems (AAMAS 2006)
Future University, Hakodate, Japan, )6/05/08-12
6th Understanding Complex Systems Symposium,
Urbana-Champaign, Il, 06/05/15-18
- Nonlinearities: from Turbulent to Magic,
Copenhagen, Denmark. 06/05/17-20
Intl Wkshp on Software Engineering Challenges for Ubiquitous Computing
, Lancaster, UK, 06/06/01-02
- Alife X - The 10th Intl Conf on the Simulation and Synthesis of Living Systems,Bloomington, Indiana, 06/06/03-07
1st Intl Conf on Economic Sciences with Heterogeneous Interacting Agents, Univ of Bologna, Italy, 06/06/15-17
NKS 2006: The Wolfram Science Conference, Washington, D.C., 06/06/16-18
Beyond Genome, 8th Annual Systems Biology - Pathway and Disease Modeling, San Francisco, California, 06/06/19-21
Intl Conf on Complex Systems (ICCS), Boston, Ma, 06/06/25-30
11th Annual Congress of the European College of Sport Science, Lausanne, Switzerland, 06/07/05-08
2006 Genetic And Evolutionary Computation Conference (GECCO-2006),
Seattle, Washington, USA, 06/07/08-12
- Intl Soc for the Systems Sciences
50th Ann Conf - Complexity, Democracy & Sustainability, Sonoma, California, 06/07/09-14
- The 1st Intl Conf on Knowledge Communication and Peer Reviewing: KCPR 2006 ,
Orlando, Florida USA, 06/07/20-23
- Toward Social Mechanisms of Android Science, An ICCS Symposium co-located at CogSci 2006, Vancouver , Canada, 06/07/26
5th World Congress of Biomechanics, Munich, Germany, 06/07/29-08/04
50th Anniversary Summit of AI, Monte Verita, Switzerland, 06/07/09-14
- Potentials of Complexity Science for Business, Governments, and the Media 2006
FIAS Summer School - Theoretical Neuroscience & Complex Systems, Frankfurt/Main, Germany, 06/08/05-27
2006 Intl Conf on Nonlinear Science and Complexity, Beijing, China, 06/08/07-12
Symmetry Festival 2006, Symmetry in Art and Science Education, Budapest, Hungary, 06/08/12-18
6th International Conference on Intelligent Virtual Agents, Marina Del Rey, Ca, U.S.A., 06/08/21-23
- World Conference on Social Simulation (WCSS-06) , Kyoto, Japan, 06/08/21-25
- Intl Conf on Parallel Problem Solving From Nature (PPSN), Reykjavik, Iceland, 06/09/09-13
7th Intl Symposium on Knowledge and Systems
Sciences (KSS'2006), Beijing, 06/09/22-25.
European Conference on Complex Systems 2006 (ECCS'06), Oxford, England, 06/09/25-29
FROM ANIMALS TO ANIMATS 9, The Ninth Intl Conf on the SIMULATION OF ADAPTIVE BEHAVIOR (SAB'06), Roma, Italy, 06/09/25-30
6th Intl Conf on Simulated Evolution and Learning , Hefei, China, 06/10/15-18
- 2006 IEEE/WIC/ACM Intl Workshop on
Interaction between Agents and Data Mining (IADM-06), Hongkong, China, 06/12/18
3rd International Workshop on Complexity and Philisophy, Stellenbosch, South Africa, 07/02/22-23
Summer School In Complexity Science, London, UK, 07/07/08-17
Call for Papers - Course/Book Announcements
- Chaos and Complexity
Resources for Students and Teachers, 06/03/01
MSc Complexity Science: Systems Thinking from New Biology to Novel Computation, Southampton, UK
Volume Four Complexity and Knowledge Management: Understanding the Role of Knowledge in the Management of Social Networks, ISCE Managing the Complex Book Series
- New Issue of
Emergence: Complexity & Organization (E:CO), Volume 7 Numbers 3 & 4, 2005
Special Double Issue: Complexity and Storytelling
Guest Editors: Ken Baskin & David Boje was published online.