How to Program Self-Organization
Author: René Doursat, Professor of Complex Systems & Co-Director, Informatics Research Centre, School of Computing, Mathematics and Digital Technology, Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester, UK
Web page: http://doursat.free.fr
How do cells assemble together so precisely to form a living organism? How do social insects build intricate nests on their own? These two major examples of architectures without an architect, or “morphogenetic self-organisation”, constitute a great source of inspiration toward innovative technologies based on collective intelligence. In this context, my research aims to establish two-way bridges between computer models of biology and biological models of computing. Potentially impacting many domains, it fosters the development of virtual evo-devo experiments, swarm robotics, synthetic biology, and socio-technical networks. All these complex systems demand a new type of engineering attitude, one that only facilitates the emergence and evolution of functional structures, not directly specifies them.