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Recent Readings

Book review: Darwinia
Reviewed: Friday, August 11, 2006

Summer reading: Spin
Reviewed: Saturday, August 5, 2006

Reviewed: Tuesday, July 18, 2006

the Omnivoire's Delimma
Reviewed: Wednesday, July 12, 2006

the Golem's Eye
Reviewed: Wednesday, May 31, 2006


Quick Robin, get the bat-bot
Tuesday, August 30, 2005

From Wired (via American Scientist) we present the bat-bot: the first robot that uses in-air sonar effectively for sensing and navigation. It's modeled closely after real bats but we humans have a long way to go:

For all its sophistication, the Bat-Bot still can't hold a candle to its biological progenitor. ... [relies on a] series of powerful computers that crunch through acoustical data from about 750 frequency channels in each ear.

... It turns out a bat's hearing is as complex as it is acute, with hundreds of thousands of frequency channels in each ear, and as many neural receptors, totaling "perhaps a million separate elements,"

"The real challenge is to find a way to duplicate the tremendous parallel processing power of a bat's brain," Simmons said.

A brain that's the size of a pea, he adds.

Now that's high density computation!


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