[Seminar] Complexity in Brains and Bodies


Tuesday, July 16, 2024 - 10:00 to 11:00


C209, Center Building


Speaker: Geoff Nitschke, Associate Professor, University of Cape Town

Title: Complexity in Brains and Bodies

Abstract: This presentation overviews studies that investigate some environmental and evolutionary conditions under which body and brain complexity evolve, and potential advantages versus disadvantages in artificial systems.  The first study, using an evolutionary collective
robotics experimental platform, looks at conditions under which neural complexity evolves without sacrificing collective behavioral efficacy.  This study evaluates the impact of imposing a fitness cost on evolving increased neural complexity in robot groups that must operate (solve
cooperative tasks) in environments of varying complexity.  The second study, using a single-robot evolutionary robotics platform, investigates the impact of increasingly complex (locomotive) task environments on the evolution of robot body-brain complexity. Results
highlight the benefits of higher body-brain complexity in specific locomotion environments and low level complexity in collective behavior environments.


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