Learning from Slime Mold

This is an amazing documentary about the research computer scientists are doing on slime mold. They are using the slime mold to solve maze and networking problems and even operate robots.

In one experiment, oat flakes were placed on a dish to represent the major cities around Tokyo and the slime mold was placed in the corresponding location for Tokyo. The mold created a network between the oat flakes that was strikingly similar to Tokyo’s rail system. My complaint about the experiment was that it did not seem to take topography into consideration, but I looked into it and they used light to simulate mountains, water, and other obstacles. Neat!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sNAxrpzc6ws&feature=player_detailpage#t=3830s

Sherlock

I discovered a new BBC TV series yesterday called Sherlock, which is a modern-day version of the Sherlock Holmes stories. If you enjoy House, chances are you would probably also enjoy Sherlock.

There are two seasons with three 1.5-hour-long episodes per season. Season 1 is available on Netflix and also happens to be re-airing on PBS this month. Season 1, Episode 1 aired last Sunday, but is still available on PBS’s website. Episodes 2 and 3 will air tonight and next Sunday night, respectively, at 10pm after Downton Abbey (which is also a very good TV series). Be sure to check it out! 🙂