"Some small steps toward Artificial Life" by Paul Chaikin (NYU)

Thursday, April 23, 2015 - 4:00pm to 5:00pm
Physics and Astronomy Colloquium

Thursdays, 4:00-5:00 pm

1-434 Physics and Astronomy (map)
Reception from 3:30-4:00 p.m.
(unless otherwise posted)

Guest Speaker: Paul Chaikin (New York University)

Talk Title:  “Some small steps toward Artificial Life”


The properties we often associate with living things are motility, metabolism, self-replication and evolution. We’ve made two different systems, one that exhibits both autonomous motility and metabolism and another which is the first artificial system that can replicate arbitrarily designed motifs. The first system, artificial swimmers, provides insight into many natural phenomena such as a flocking of birds and schooling of fish. The second system needs no external intervention other than cycling temperature and light, mimicking daily cycles on earth. In fact the system replicates when put outside on a rooftop. The system exponentially grows and through 24 doubling cycles has produced offspring multiplying the initial seed more than 7million times. It provides a new way of producing many, many copies of nanoscale devices and potentially evolving them. We have initiated an elementary form of evolution and shown competition and selection of one species over another.


For more information, contact Karoly Holczer


1-434 PAB