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back to article Insect vision a template for computer ‘sight’

Computers aren’t yet good at making complex, ad-hoc decisions from visual inputs. However, the discovery at Melbourne’s RMIT that bees' brains are big enough to do so could set the direction for future computer vision research. According to RMIT Associate Professor Adrian Dyer, of RMIT’s school of media and communication, the …

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I've heard there is a lot of buzz around these guys' research..

.. I'll get my coat

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Coat

That pun...

...had quite a sting in its tail.

.. Grab my coat too while you are there :-P

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Coat

Re: That pun...

Hive nothing more to add to this.

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Facepalm

This just in: bees can make sense of their own sensory inputs

Why, who'd have guessed!

Also in news: the sky is blue, the sea is wet, and Windows 8 stinks.

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Facepalm

Make it even easier...

They can simplify the research even further by focussing (groan) on the input of just one of the bee's eyes and just half of the bee's brain. After all, if humans can still function properly while covering one eye (see icon) (now cover one eye and you can still see icon) there is a good chance that one-eyed bees can also function properly.

Or to put it another way...

Half a bee, philosophically, must, ipso facto, half not be. But half the bee has got to be, vis a vis, its entity. D'you see?

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Insect intelligence???

Yesterday evening I spent 5 minutes chasing a fly around the room trying to splat it with a fly-swatter. Any time I got within striking distance the bastard took off and flew somewhere else. Eventually it was neutralised by a lucky in-flight swat.

Impressive.

I then opened the door and a moth (well really a caddis) flew in the door - straight into a halogen light and fried itself to death.

Sub-impressive.

I doubt very much the boffins will find anything substantially different between fly brains and caddis brains, so it will likely be a challenge to make sure we get the benefits without getting the stupid stuff.

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Re: Insect intelligence???

That's nothing to do with insect intelligence but different "programming". The fly has no interest in the halogen light whereas the moth tried to use it to navigate. For millions of years of moth evolution the brightest thing at night was the moon, the fact that moths have'nt had long enough to develope strategies to cope with artificial lights does'nt mean its intelligence is any less impressive than fly intelligence.

I was at a family meal once where the host brought out a very hot plate warmer and told a young child (4/5yrs?) "dont touch that, it's very hot!" what was the first thing she did when his back was turned? ........"Waaaaaaaah!!!!!!!!!!!" yet she has quite a bit more intelligence than a fly!

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Alien

Pretty sure I've seen this one before on X-Files.

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Anonymous Coward

I want too

...bee-lieve!

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MJI
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I read this as

X-Flies

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Anonymous Coward

So....

Can us apes ape those at the apiary?

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I'm reading this as:

1. Make robots with little bee sized cockpits and controls.

2. ...

3. Profit!

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Trollface

My new auto-driving car

It's great, I can turn it on, prod the gas and let the car do the rest itself.

It turns in sharp, gets lift off oversteer in the corners, blips on downchanges, flashes fast lane dawdlers out of the way, all while I have a snooze.

The only downside is that I always end up at the local mature plants outlet....

Steven R

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FAIL

Why this is a stupid idea

Lots of Bee's, fly, bugs get stuck in my conservatory and cant work out their trying to fly through a solid transparent object. They then proceed to spend all their energy trying to fly through said object and die from exhaustion.

This is not a good model to base computing sight based decision making from.

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Boffin

Re: Why this is a stupid idea

Why not?

The problem you've described is that they cannot see an invisible barrier, which makes perfect sense on account of it being, well, invisible.

Avoiding invisible barriers is clearly not a vision problem, it's a knowledge problem. You have to know that barriers like that could exist, and how to identify them.

Large, vertical sheets of transparent material are a very recent invention - so there aren't any structures in the bee brain that could acknowledge their existence.

There's a video doing the rounds of a dog that won't climb through a yet-to-be glazed glass door. The dog knows that things that shape normally have an invisible barrier, so assumes it cannot pass and waits for the door to be opened.

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Stop

Is this why Bee's are on the decline...

Because scientists are busy disecting their brain to bring ever close judgement day!

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Headmaster

Re: Is this why Bee's are on the decline...

Unlike apostrophes, it seems ...

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Re: Is this why Bee's are on the decline...

Language evolves with the times... If we all stuck to the rules all of the time we'd all still be speaking Latin....

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Re: Is this why Bee's are on the decline...

Agreed but a more sensible evolution for the relatively recent invention of the apostrophe would be to dispense with it altogether, rather than treat it as part of the letter S and sprinkle it liberally all over the place.

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The most complex part of this problem

will be teaching the computers to like honey.

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Pint

In the 1920s it was the bees' knees,

in the 2020s it might be the bees' brains. Glad to know that we've progressed these last hundred years !...

Henri

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Could have started with even simpler brains

Like politicians'.

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