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Jean-Arcady Meyer

Jean-Arcady Meyer is Emeritus Research Director at CNRS (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique) and a researcher at the Institute of Intelligent Systems and Robotics, University Pierre and Marie Curie, Paris.

Titles by This Author

When Biology Inspires Innovation

Humans have modeled their technology on nature for centuries. The inventor of paper was inspired by a wasp’s nest; Brunelleschi demonstrated the principles of his famous dome with an egg; a Swiss company produced a wristwatch with an alarm modeled on the sound-producing capabilities of a cricket. Today, in the era of the “new bionics,” engineers aim to reproduce the speed and maneuverability of the red tuna in a submarine; cochlear implants send sound signals to the auditory nerve of a hearing-impaired person; and robots replicate a baby’s cognitive development. How to Catch a Robot Rat examines past, present, and future attempts to apply the methods and systems found in nature to the design of objects and devices.

The authors look at “natural technology transfers”: how the study of nature inspired technological breakthroughs—including the cricket-inspired watch; Velcro, which duplicates the prickly burrs of a burdock flower; and self-sharpening blades that are modeled on rats’ self-sharpening teeth. They examine autonomous robots that imitate animals and their behaviors—for example, the development of an unmanned microdrone that could fly like an albatross. And they describe hybrids of natural and artificial systems: neuroprostheses translating the thought of quadriplegics; and a nanorobot controlled by muscle cells. Some of the ideas described have outstripped technology’s capacity to realize them; nature has had more than three billion years to perfect its designs, humankind not quite so long.

Ouvrage publié avec le concours du Ministère français chargé de la Culture – Centre National du Livre.

Published with the financial help of the Ministère de la Culture - Centre National du Livre.

Titles by This Editor

Proceedings of the Eighth International Conference on the Simulation of Adaptive Behavior

The biannual International Conference on the Simulation of Adaptive Behavior brings together researchers from ethology, psychology, ecology, artificial intelligence, artificial life, robotics, engineering, and related fields to advance the understanding of behaviors and underlying mechanisms that allow natural and synthetic agents (animats) to adapt and survive in uncertain environments. The work presented focuses on well-defined models—robotic, computer simulation, and mathematical—that help to characterize and compare various organizational principles or architectures underlying adaptive behavior in both animals and animats. The proceedings of the eighth conference treat such topics as passive and active perception, navigation and mapping, collective and social behavior, and applied adaptive behavior.

Proceedings of the Seventh International Conference on Simulation of Adaptive Behavior

The Simulation of Adaptive Behavior Conference brings together researchers from ethology, psychology, ecology, artificial intelligence, artificial life, robotics, computer science, engineering, and related fields to further understanding of the behaviors and underlying mechanisms that allow adaptation and survival in uncertain environments. The work presented focuses on robotic and computational experimentation with well-defined models that help to characterize and compare alternative organizational principles or architectures underlying adaptive behavior in both natural animals and synthetic animats.

Proceedings of the Sixth International Conference on Simulation of Adaptive Behavior

The Animals to Animats Conference brings together researchers from ethology, psychology, ecology, artificial intelligence, artificial life, robotics, engineering, and related fields to further understanding of the behaviors and underlying mechanisms that allow natural and synthetic agents (animats) to adapt and survive in uncertain environments. The work presented focuses on well-defined models—robotic, computer-simulation, and mathematical—that help to characterize and compare various organizational principles or architectures underlying adaptive behavior in both natural animals and animats.

Proceedings of the Fifth International Conference on Simulation of Adaptive Behavior

The Animals to Animats Conference brings together researchers from ethology, psychology, ecology, artificial intelligence, artificial life, robotics, engineering, and related fields to further understanding of the behaviors and underlying mechanisms that allow natural and synthetic agents (animats) to adapt and survive in uncertain environments. The work presented focuses on well-defined models--robotic, computer-simulation, and mathematical--that help to characterize and compare various organizational principles or architectures underlying adaptive behavior in both natural animals and animats.

Proceedings of the Fourth International Conference on Simulation of Adaptive Behavior

Comparative Approaches to Cognitive Science consolidates a series of recent advances in cognitive science, describing a novel, animal-based, largely nonsymbolic approach to understanding basic mechanisms in adaptive intelligence. Scholars who are at the cutting edge of their disciplines clearly explain their concepts and techniques in twenty contributions that provide a balance of both theoretical and empirical approaches.

The essays are tied together by the idea that our understanding of cognition is likely to be enhanced by consideration of mechanisms and processes at its foundation—mechanisms that are shared by both human and nonhuman animals—and which may be implemented and tested in some simulated animals or built robots.

The themes described in the book include considerations of the perceptual and motor abilities of animals as the evolutionary and conceptual foundation of more complex abilities; modeling focused as much on connections and constraints as on language and symbols; an interest in simple adaptive processes in animals and robots  as the basis for more complex forms of learning and adaptation; and a consideration of animals and robots as integrated and situated systems in contrast to the reductionist and environment-free frameworks often seen in standard cognitive science.A part of the book considers the question of intentionality in animals—whether they "know they know," or have beliefs—and how that might implicate behavior. Other sections address how representation, communication, motivation, and emotion affect behavior.

Contributors: C. Allen. M. Bekoff. M.A. Boden. W.T. Bourbon. G. Butterworth. P.W. Cheng. J. Delacour. D.C. Dennett. M. Dyer. C.S. Evans. N. Frijda. J.P. Halperin. K.J. Holyoak. P. Marler. D. MacFarland. B.W. Mel. J.-A. Meyer. J. Neiworth. H.L. Roitblat. C. Thinus-Blanc. R.K.R. Thompson. F. Toates.

Proceedings of the Third International Conference on Simulation of Adpative Behavior

August 8-12, 1994, Brighton, England

From Animals to Animats 3 brings together research intended to advance the frontier of an exciting new approach to understanding intelligence. The contributors represent a broad range of interests from artificial intelligence and robotics to ethology and the neurosciences. Unifying these approaches is the notion of "animat" - an artificial animal, either simulated by a computer or embodied in a robot, which must survive and adapt in progressively more challenging environments. The 58 contributions focus particularly on well-defined models, computer simulations, and built robots in order to help characterize and compare various principles and architectures capable of inducing adaptive behavior in real or artificial animals.

Topics include:

- Individual and collective behavior.
- Neural correlates of behavior.
- Perception and motor control.
- Motivation and emotion.
- Action selection and behavioral sequences.
- Ontogeny, learning, and evolution.
- Internal world models and cognitive processes.
- Applied adaptive behavior.
- Autonomous robots.
- Heirarchical and parallel organizations.
- Emergent structures and behaviors.
- Problem solving and planning.
- Goal-directed behavior.
- Neural networks and evolutionary computation.
- Characterization of environments.

A Bradford Book

Proceedings of the Second International Conference on Simulation of Adaptive Behavior

More than sixty contributions in From Animals to Animats2 by researchers in ethology, ecology, cybernetics, artificial intelligence, robotics, and related fields investigate behaviors and the underlying mechanisms that allow animals and, potentially, robots to adapt and survive in uncertain environments. Jean-Arcady Meyer is Director of Research, CNRS, Paris. Herbert L. Roitblat is Professor of Psychology at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. Stewart W. Wilson is a scientist at The Rowland Institute for Science, Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Topics covered: The Animat Approach to Adaptive Behavior. Perception and Motor Control. Action Selection and Behavioral Sequences. Cognitive Maps and Internal World Models. Learning. Evolution. Collective Behavior.

Proceedings of the First International Conference on Simulation of Adaptive Behavior

These sixty contributions from researchers in ethology, ecology, cybernetics, artificial intelligence, robotics, and related fields delve into the behaviors and underlying mechanisms that allow animals and, potentially, robots to adapt and survive in uncertain environments. They focus in particular on simulation models in order to help characterize and compare various organizational principles or architectures capable of inducing adaptive behavior in real or artificial animals.