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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


Those wacky biologists...
Tuesday, July 4, 2006

A team from the University of Ulm in Germany and the University of Zurich set a band of Saharan desert ants out questing for food. They eliminated direction as a factor by sending the ants through a long, straight tunnel. Once the ants reached the food, the scientists gathered them up and made some amendments to their legs: Some of the ants were fitted with stilts, while others had their appendages partially amputated.

Actually, I think that they had a great idea! Calling it "counting", however, reads more into the data than is available. Many animals are known to count accurately and to keep track of things like rate, etc. (Charles Gallistel's book is a wonderful read if you're interested in learning much, much, more!) but just because a human would solve a problem using solution X doesn't mean that an animal uses X too (even if we can't think of any other method to use than X...).


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Copyright -- Gary Warren King, 2004 - 2006