Artificial Intelligence

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University of Caloocan City North Campus Congressional Road,Bagumbong

Artificial Intellige nce (Open Worm Project - Lego Bot) Submitted to: Sir.Michael Tan Yr./Sec.:BSIS-3A

Submitted by: Reyes, Craig Jann P.

Details: Open Worm Project - Lego Bot

A humble roundworm is leading the race in artificial intelligence, showing that it may be possible one day to upload our brains to a computer. Called the Open Worm Project, the research brings together scientists and programmers from around the world with the aim of recreating the behavior of the common roundworm (Caenorhabditis elegans) in a machine. The open source project recently had its first major breakthrough when its software -- modeled on the neurons of the worm's nervous system -- independently controlled a Lego robot. The machine's sensors, without any prior programming, made the robot behave in a similar fashion to C. elegans, approaching and backing away from obstacles or stimulated by food. With the worm's nose neurons replaced by a sonar sensor and the motor neurons running down both sides of the worm replicated on the left and right motors of the Lego bot, the robot could emulate the worm's biological wiring. Larson said that while the open source project is still awaiting peer review, and the scientists and researchers in the experiment are reluctant to make any bold claims about how closely it resembled biological behavior, the result were nevertheless impressive. The project aims to digitally model the worm entirely in a virtual environment; creating a robot with an elastic body complete with stretchy muscles. The digital version of the worm will be released on the web in June this year, allowing anyone with an interest to tinker with the project. Larson said the open source and collaborative nature of the project has been key to its success, allowing it to make fast progress over the four years of its existence. So far, it's had input from more than 60 contributors from 15 countries, all of them bringing a unique take on the problems thrown up by the project. The project has now split into various sub-teams, all of them dealing with different elements: one team is looking at the physical and mechanical model, while another is fleshing out the neurons and the muscles and their electrical models. The great part of the open source experiment is that the team can take onboard left-field suggestions that push it beyond its boundaries.

Functionality

The Machine’s sensors without any prior programming made the robot behave in a similar fashion to C.elegans, approaching and backing away from obstacles or stimulated by food. With the worm’s nose neurons replaced by a sonar sensor and the motor neurons running down both sides of the worm replicated on the left and right motors of the Lego bot, the robot could emulate the worm’s biological wiring. The C. elegans nematode was chosen because of the simplicity of its biological structure, the complexity of the experiment has been such that the team has had to narrow down the project to just a third of the worm's neurons, restricting it to those parts of the worm's make-up that would display behavior.

Ability

While the developers say it will be some time before the Lego bot will be avoiding predators or searching for a mate, scientists say the project shows that artificial intelligence, or AI as it is known, is coming out of the realm of science fiction. Developers say it will be some time before the Lego bot will be avoiding predators or searching for a mate, scientists say the project shows that artificial intelligence, or AI as it is known, is coming out of the realm of science fiction.

Limitation

The Open Worm Project chose the C.elegans nematode because of the simplicity of its biological structure. Even though the worm just 302 neurons, the project is so complex that researchers have limited themselves to those neurons – some 30% in total – that control it’s behavior.

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