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

TIL – Buses, XML, and apples

Inspired by the Today I Learned subreddit on reddit, I have decided to start documenting 3 (hopefully) things I learn on a daily (or, more likely, occasional) basis.

So… what did I learn today?

  1. One Bus Away (a public transit scheduling app developed by a UW student) is going to receive $150k in funding from Puget Sound transit agencies (source)
  2. XML is 15 years old
  3. Honecrisp apples can be refrigerated for six months and still be good (source)