Here, assistant professor Simon Garnier studies decentralized systems like colonies of ants — or petri dishes filled with slime mold — to figure out how these organisms make decisions and solve problems together. That’s what’s called “swarm intelligence,” and in the future, this kind of information could help us design an algorithm to create a more efficient network of self-driving cars.
If you want to learn more about slime mold, watch the video above. We joined Garnier in the lab to re-create a famous slime mold experiment, and we even tasted some right out of the petri dish. (Spoiler: it tasted like moss.) Not that we walked into his lab with the idea of eating some stinky, unicellular organism. But we had to give it a try after Garnier said: “It tastes like… have you ever licked the floor?”
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