OpenWorm milestone: artificial worm gains muscle sensation

James sez, "Mini-milestone in the OpenWorm Project, the collaborative, open source attempt to construct an artificial life form from the cellular level to the point where it's able to have basic problem-solving abilities. They've now artificially recreated internal muscle sensation, a building block for movement, entirely through code -- watch the eerie video!"

"The core algorithm for the physics simulation is called PCI-SPH, which is a somewhat advanced but well understood particle simulation method. The main source of complexity is the architecture: going from brain firing signals to muscle contractions to moving particles around."

So yes, it accurately simulates the muscle algorithm for these kinds of worms:

"Any time you do a simulation like this you're trying to make intelligent abstractions," John allows. "Unless you are simulating from first principles and moving quarks and gluons around, you're going to be glossing over some detail. So you try to make an abstraction that captures the essence of what you think is happening under the hood, and measure the results. In this case, the muscle model matches a basic level of our understanding of brain to muscle signaling and the physics of contraction/expansion in this worm, and the output (how the worm moves, displaces liquid, etc) looks pretty close to the real-world measurements!"

Artificial Life Milestone: OpenWorm Team Recreates Internal Muscle Sensation Entirely Through Code (Thanks, James!)


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