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Amoeboid yellow slime mould might seem an unlikely candidate to become the basis of future 'bio computers', but scientists in Japan say that the mould shows unlikely signs of intelligence.
Colonies of the mould appear to be able to 'organise' themselves so that they take the most direct route through a maze to find food, while at the same time avoiding damage from light.
The mould even appears to be able to 'remember' dangers and avoid them.
Toshiyuki Nakagaki, of Future University Hakodate told AFP, 'Simple creatures can solve certain kinds of difficult puzzles. If you want to spotlight the essence of intelligence, it's easier to use these simple creatures.'
The slime moulds are not intelligent as we understand it, but by flexibly responding to stresses such as light, and adapting, they are able to solve navigation problems that would baffle computers.
The mould cells appear to operate as a 'network' that can even remember when they experienced stresses and dangers, and adapt.
These primitive networks could be the key to building a new generation of biological computers, say researchers.
Nakagaki has already demonstrated that the moulds can 'design' a railway network similar to Tokyo's by using this primitive navigation system - research which won him the Ig Nobel prize in 2010.
Atsushi Tero, from Kyushu University, southern Japan, who conducted the research, believes that the intelligence skills possessed by slime mould networks could potentially be used in the future design of transport systems or electric transmission lines.
"Computers are not so good at analysing the best routes that connect many base points because the volume of calculations becomes too large for them," he said.
"But slime moulds, without calculating all the possible options, can flow over areas in an impromptu manner and gradually find the best routes.”
Originally posted by connorromanow
reply to post by PhoenixOD
thats amazing something with no real brain can think for itself