Thursday, March 13, 2008

Wind-powered Life

I don't know for certain how this might relate to our class at this more practical stage of the project, but I have something to show you. If nothing else, it could be a sort of inspiration amid the bureaucracy we have necessarily created.

There is an artist who creates wooden organisms powered by the wind. He records information about each organism and enters the data into a genetic algorithm program. This is an evolution simulator: it draws successful patterns from random change. Usually the results of such programs -- the ones I've seen, anyway -- are tiny, squirming plastic gadgets. This artist has created much larger designs. He has achieved the element of grace that defines life as we know it. He envisions these animals becoming so perfectly calibrated that their movement will be perpetual. They would move in herds across the remaining plains of the Earth. The ingenuity, complexity, and precision displayed here is literally beyond human capacity. You may not believe your eyes.

Courtesy of YouTube (where else?)

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