Our end is nigh, methinks. But it’s a fascinating article!
A lone group of Swiss scientists have been using scattered LEDs, neural circuity, and an army of miniature robots to explore the very basis of good and evil. No, you aren’t reading the back cover of a DVD in the “one dollar each, please get this trash out of our store” bin of your local blockbuster -this research is very real and very, very awesome.
Dario Floreano and his team at the Laboratory of Intelligent Systems in the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology built a swarm of mobile robots, outfitted with light bulbs and photodetectors. These were set loose in a zone with illuminated “food” and “poison” zones which charged or depleted their batteries. Their programming was initially random, so the first generation staggered around the place like bunch of concussed puppies.