• Lucid Dreaming - Dream Views




    Results 1 to 25 of 25
    1. #1
      Night Stalker <span class='glow_000000'>Baron Samedi</span>'s Avatar
      Join Date
      Aug 2009
      LD Count
      999
      Gender
      Location
      honolulu, Hawaii
      Posts
      5,863
      Likes
      2263
      DJ Entries
      476

      this dude is a steampunk god

      Theo Jansen

      Binary brains of plastic tubes
      ya gwan fok wid de Baron? ye gotta nodda ting comin. (Formerly known as Baking Nomad.)

    2. #2
      ├┼┼┼┼┤
      Join Date
      Jun 2006
      Gender
      Location
      Equestria
      Posts
      6,315
      Likes
      1190
      DJ Entries
      1
      This is hillarious and awesome. I wonder if there are more practical appliances to it, like moving stuff.

      ---------
      Lost count of how many lucid dreams I've had
      ---------

    3. #3
      Xei
      UnitedKingdom Xei is offline
      Banned
      Join Date
      Aug 2005
      Posts
      9,984
      Likes
      3082
      Science wins!

      I wish I had a clearer idea about what was going on here though. Is it just the brains that 'evolve'? Or were the structures themselves evolved in silico?

    4. #4
      ├┼┼┼┼┤
      Join Date
      Jun 2006
      Gender
      Location
      Equestria
      Posts
      6,315
      Likes
      1190
      DJ Entries
      1
      I can't actually figure out if there are any electronics in there. Looks like mechanics purely.

      ---------
      Lost count of how many lucid dreams I've had
      ---------

    5. #5
      Designated Cyberpunk Achievements:
      Referrer Bronze Veteran First Class 5000 Hall Points
      Black_Eagle's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jan 2008
      Location
      Austin, Texas
      Posts
      2,440
      Likes
      146
      I like the idea of machines operating on their own in the wild.

    6. #6
      Member DarkenedReality's Avatar
      Join Date
      Aug 2010
      LD Count
      1
      Gender
      Location
      North Carolina...
      Posts
      31
      Likes
      0
      ...This actually freaks me out quite a bit. I can't get the animatrix out of my head >.<

      Doesn't seem to be any electronics whatsoever...Just gravity/wind/cause and effect 'reasoning'. I'd be fairly surprised if, without electronics introduced, they coul every truly 'survive' on their own. Remarkable idea though...could be pretty useful.

    7. #7
      Night Stalker <span class='glow_000000'>Baron Samedi</span>'s Avatar
      Join Date
      Aug 2009
      LD Count
      999
      Gender
      Location
      honolulu, Hawaii
      Posts
      5,863
      Likes
      2263
      DJ Entries
      476
      Quote Originally Posted by Xei View Post
      Science wins!

      I wish I had a clearer idea about what was going on here though. Is it just the brains that 'evolve'? Or were the structures themselves evolved in silico?
      These creations are not evolving on their own. First he has to get them to survive, then, reproduce, then they can evolve. The brains are mechanical.

      Quote Originally Posted by Marvo View Post
      I can't actually figure out if there are any electronics in there. Looks like mechanics purely.
      It is purely mechanical. That's what so amazing about these creations.

      The most basic language that computers speak in is binary, zeroes and ones, or off and on. In electronics these are open and closed circuits. Logic brains using binary can be created mechanically by having one position of a joint be on, and another one be off. It's basically an "if then, then that." In other words, if the machine touches water, it is going to move away from it. To imagine it in an even more simple scenario:

      You place a bucket of water over a slightly open door. If someone opens the door, then the bucket of water will fall. They have turned the logic circuit on, producing the desired result.
      ya gwan fok wid de Baron? ye gotta nodda ting comin. (Formerly known as Baking Nomad.)

    8. #8
      Member SpecialInterests's Avatar
      Join Date
      Nov 2008
      Gender
      Location
      Pangea Ultima
      Posts
      349
      Likes
      29
      I don't really get why he keeps calling them beasts and animals.

      They are pretty friggen awesome though.

    9. #9
      Member
      Join Date
      Feb 2004
      Posts
      5,165
      Likes
      709
      I have to agree, he is a little kooky, and most of that doesn't seem at all practical. It is still pretty cool though.

    10. #10
      Xei
      UnitedKingdom Xei is offline
      Banned
      Join Date
      Aug 2005
      Posts
      9,984
      Likes
      3082
      I'm not sure if he's kooky. He's an artist and so is inclined towards speaking quite metaphorically... people from places like The Netherlands can also speak like this habitually.

    11. #11
      Antagonist Invader's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jan 2004
      Location
      Discordia
      Posts
      3,239
      Likes
      533
      I remember trying to find this guy for quite a while after having first seen a video of the more bulky walker he shows at 4:45. Very impressive to see some of the larger models here. o_O

      Quote Originally Posted by Xei
      Is it just the brains that 'evolve'? Or were the structures themselves evolved in silico?
      The brains are needed, he explains, as a means of keeping track of where the machine is in relation to the water and the dunes. I think then that his changes are being made more to the layout of the structures. Not sure if he'd need to make different kinds of brains for the different forms of walkers though.

      Mechanical binary. <3

    12. #12
      Member Achievements:
      1 year registered 1000 Hall Points Veteran First Class
      illidan's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jul 2007
      Gender
      Location
      2046
      Posts
      135
      Likes
      2
      It's a little misleading to say they evolve, because they cannot reproduce on their own and it's not really natural selection but HIS selection that determines which species gets to live on. Then again, I guess you could argue, that humans are part of nature, so the selection is indeed natural and they reproduce via symbiosis with a human artist.

      I'm not sure how the brain works; it sounds interesting, though. He said it was a binary counter and that it keeps track of where the creature is on the beach. So I guess zero means all the way in the water and 2^n-1 means all the way up the dunes (or the other way around). I might be totally off here, though. I also can't explain, how the creature might know that it's just a little farther up the beach.

      I'm wondering, don't the creatures somehow loose the orientation after a while, as in not walking perpendicular to the shoreline anymore? They cannot "steer", can they?

      The walking mechanism looks quite intriguing, too.
      Last edited by illidan; 09-13-2010 at 09:33 PM.

    13. #13
      Sleeping Dragon juroara's Avatar
      Join Date
      May 2006
      Gender
      Location
      San Antonio, TX
      Posts
      3,865
      Likes
      1171
      DJ Entries
      144
      Quote Originally Posted by illidan View Post
      It's a little misleading to say they evolve, because they cannot reproduce on their own and it's not really natural selection but HIS selection that determines which species gets to live on. Then again, I guess you could argue, that humans are part of nature, so the selection is indeed natural and they reproduce via symbiosis with a human artist.
      That's an awesome way of putting it! Can any species today be what it is without the involvement of another species?

      He's a crazy genius artist, and as a creature creator (purely fantastical paintings) I understand him!

      It would be better if you relate these mechanical wonders to the real living binary creatures of the world - single celled organisms making simple decisions like, go left or go right! Whether or not we could ever consider his works of art as life, I think they can still teach us much about life and evolution. Because really, everything we make is an expression of our own humanity.

    14. #14
      Banned
      Join Date
      May 2007
      LD Count
      Loads
      Gender
      Location
      Digital Forest.
      Posts
      6,864
      Likes
      385
      Quote Originally Posted by illidan View Post
      It's a little misleading to say they evolve, because they cannot reproduce on their own and it's not really natural selection but HIS selection that determines which species gets to live on. Then again, I guess you could argue, that humans are part of nature, so the selection is indeed natural and they reproduce via symbiosis with a human artist.
      Erm, the 'beasts' that 'survive' are candidate for reproduction. He does not arbitrarily designate which are continued. Thus they evolve.

      I'm not sure how the brain works; it sounds interesting, though. He said it was a binary counter and that it keeps track of where the creature is on the beach. So I guess zero means all the way in the water and 2^n-1 means all the way up the dunes (or the other way around). I might be totally off here, though. I also can't explain, how the creature might know that it's just a little farther up the beach.

      I'm wondering, don't the creatures somehow loose the orientation after a while, as in not walking perpendicular to the shoreline anymore? They cannot "steer", can they?

      The walking mechanism looks quite intriguing, too.
      He never really explains anything...about anything. As far as I can tell, the brain isn't hooked up to control anything, which would make it a glorified pedometer... Then again, he never explained what released the gas in the bottles, or whether it was simply a fill-up and go scenario where the things are constantly moving when they have built up energy as opposed to an actual mechanical decision engine controlling the behavior.

    15. #15
      Member Achievements:
      1 year registered 1000 Hall Points Veteran First Class
      illidan's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jul 2007
      Gender
      Location
      2046
      Posts
      135
      Likes
      2
      Quote Originally Posted by A Roxxor View Post
      Erm, the 'beasts' that 'survive' are candidate for reproduction. He does not arbitrarily designate which are continued. Thus they evolve.
      But he is the one who makes changes to the design. It's certainly not random mutation. However, as we haven't agreed on a clear definition of evolution, this is all debatable. Must the vector of change be natural for it to be called evolution? And what does 'natural' mean anyway? These are the kind of questions one would have to answer first.

      Quote Originally Posted by A Roxxor View Post
      He never really explains anything...about anything. As far as I can tell, the brain isn't hooked up to control anything, which would make it a glorified pedometer... Then again, he never explained what released the gas in the bottles, or whether it was simply a fill-up and go scenario where the things are constantly moving when they have built up energy as opposed to an actual mechanical decision engine controlling the behavior.
      He clearly states that the 'brain' is a binary counter. A 'binary step counter' he calls it. But you are right about him not saying anything about whether or not the 'brain' controls something; not that I recall, anyway. I just assumed it would control something, otherwise 'brain' would really be an overstatement.

    16. #16
      Banned
      Join Date
      May 2007
      LD Count
      Loads
      Gender
      Location
      Digital Forest.
      Posts
      6,864
      Likes
      385
      Quote Originally Posted by illidan View Post
      But he is the one who makes changes to the design. It's certainly not random mutation. However, as we haven't agreed on a clear definition of evolution, this is all debatable. Must the vector of change be natural for it to be called evolution? And what does 'natural' mean anyway? These are the kind of questions one would have to answer first.
      No, he doesn't change the design. The design is altered through evolution by representing it as a genetic code of sorts, which is subject to mutation upon reproduction.


      He clearly states that the 'brain' is a binary counter. A 'binary step counter' he calls it. But you are right about him not saying anything about whether or not the 'brain' controls something; not that I recall, anyway. I just assumed it would control something, otherwise 'brain' would really be an overstatement.
      Actually, I retract that. I re-watched the video and it seems the water sensor resets the brain. It's still not quite clear what the implications of the number the counter represents are, which is what I meant when I said it wasn't hooked up to anything.

    17. #17
      Member Achievements:
      1 year registered 1000 Hall Points Veteran First Class
      illidan's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jul 2007
      Gender
      Location
      2046
      Posts
      135
      Likes
      2
      Quote Originally Posted by A Roxxor View Post
      No, he doesn't change the design. The design is altered through evolution by representing it as a genetic code of sorts, which is subject to mutation upon reproduction.
      He reproduces them, so 'mutation upon reproduction' means changes by him.

      He used some kind of genetic algorithm to arrive at his 'eleven holy numbers', but apart from that pretty much the entire design seems to have come about through human choice: the plastic bottles, the sails, the concept of the leg system, the hammers, the compressed air, etc.. These things did not evolve.

      He talks about a 'genetical code', but I suspect that even if there is a literal 'code', it probably influences only one or a few aspects of the design.

      He's pretty vague about a lot of things. Deliberately so, I suspect; he probably doesn't want to destroy the arcane aura that surrounds him.

      Of course, he could make up a code and use randomness for producing variants. Let me illustrate this with an example. Say we have a code of 3 Bits: Bit 1 means sail or no sail, bit 2 means long legs or short legs, and bit 3 means big or small. An extremely simple code. He could then flip a coin for each of the bits to determine the design for a new beast. This would be a 'genetic code' of sorts, but there are a few things that clearly distinguish it from a genetic code in biology:
      • the code only affects a few aspects of the design, the rest is done by the designer
      • the code does not directly cause the new design, except through the interpretation of the designer and he defined the semantics of it
      • the code is not directly passed on to the offspring, but indirectly through the designer
      • the code cannot become larger, unless the designer makes it larger and defines semantics for the new bits


      If you actually know how he does it, please enlighten me, but this is the only way I can imagine him working with any kind of 'genetic code'.

      I think that a much or important objection to calling this evolution, however, is the following: the 'beasts' don't reproduce until they become extinct. I'm pretty sure he decides to discontinue a particlar design based on rules he made up or maybe even at whim.

      And also I've said it before, but I'm saying it again, because I think it is important the 'beasts' cannot reproduce without him.

    18. #18
      Banned
      Join Date
      May 2007
      LD Count
      Loads
      Gender
      Location
      Digital Forest.
      Posts
      6,864
      Likes
      385
      Quote Originally Posted by illidan View Post
      He used some kind of genetic algorithm to arrive at his 'eleven holy numbers', but apart from that pretty much the entire design seems to have come about through human choice: the plastic bottles, the sails, the concept of the leg system, the hammers, the compressed air, etc.. These things did not evolve.
      They're indivisible units in his universe, so that's kind of a moot point.

      He talks about a 'genetical code', but I suspect that even if there is a literal 'code', it probably influences only one or a few aspects of the design.

      He's pretty vague about a lot of things. Deliberately so, I suspect; he probably doesn't want to destroy the arcane aura that surrounds him.
      Probably. But he did evolve the walking mechanism, so why would it be such a stretch to assume he has a similar program for 'breeding' the animals by using their genetic codes in a deterministic algorithm of some sort?

      Of course, he could make up a code and use randomness for producing variants. Let me illustrate this with an example. Say we have a code of 3 Bits: Bit 1 means sail or no sail, bit 2 means long legs or short legs, and bit 3 means big or small. An extremely simple code. He could then flip a coin for each of the bits to determine the design for a new beast. This would be a 'genetic code' of sorts, but there are a few things that clearly distinguish it from a genetic code in biology:
      • the code only affects a few aspects of the design, the rest is done by the designer
      • the code does not directly cause the new design, except through the interpretation of the designer and he defined the semantics of it
      • the code is not directly passed on to the offspring, but indirectly through the designer
      • the code cannot become larger, unless the designer makes it larger and defines semantics for the new bits
      That would be true if the code was that simple. Given how he never explains it, I can't make any comment on that. But I don't think it is that simple.

      If you actually know how he does it, please enlighten me, but this is the only way I can imagine him working with any kind of 'genetic code'.

      I think that a much or important objection to calling this evolution, however, is the following: the 'beasts' don't reproduce until they become extinct. I'm pretty sure he decides to discontinue a particlar design based on rules he made up or maybe even at whim.

      And also – I've said it before, but I'm saying it again, because I think it is important – the 'beasts' cannot reproduce without him.
      Sure, they cannot reproduce without him; he is their reproduction mechanism. But- he clearly stated that the beach is a 'test' and that animalws which survive are 'bred'. Assuming he doesn't want to go through the enormously tedious process of testing each individual offspring on the beach, he has likely devised a shortcut where his genetic algorithm goes through several generations before giving him the most fit offspring as a result, which he then builds and tests. That would explain why each species is represented by only a few models. He is speeding up the process artificially to make it feasible. The things still 'evolve', just not in the traditional sense of evolving through population pressures slowly over time. I actually don't know what he does, but I am working on an artificial life simulator, so I'm biased with my own techniques

    19. #19
      Member Achievements:
      1 year registered 1000 Hall Points Veteran First Class
      illidan's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jul 2007
      Gender
      Location
      2046
      Posts
      135
      Likes
      2
      Quote Originally Posted by A Roxxor View Post
      They're indivisible units in his universe, so that's kind of a moot point.
      Yeah, I suppose that's true.


      Quote Originally Posted by A Roxxor View Post
      Probably. But he did evolve the walking mechanism, so why would it be such a stretch to assume he has a similar program for 'breeding' the animals by using their genetic codes in a deterministic algorithm of some sort?
      Not a stretch, but he never mentions anything like it in the talk and I don't think there's anything about it on his website. That's why I doubt that he's doing it that way. Of course I don't really know. Maybe he even just used the term 'genetical code' as a buzzword.

      Also, he didn't evolve the walking mechanism as a whole. In fact, he designed most of it first, but wasn't sure about some of the proportions of the tubes. So he used a computer algorithm to figure out optimal proportions (his eleven holy numbers).


      Quote Originally Posted by A Roxxor View Post
      That would be true if the code was that simple. Given how he never explains it, I can't make any comment on that. But I don't think it is that simple.
      How can you be so sure that it's not that simple? You must have some idea of your own about how he does it or at least a good reason to believe that there is more to it. Personally, I imagine it to be extremely difficult to create an 'artifical genetic code' for these beasts that does not have the problems in point two and three.


      Quote Originally Posted by A Roxxor View Post
      Sure, they cannot reproduce without him; he is their reproduction mechanism.
      If one drops the distinction between 'natural' and 'human', I am much more inclined to regard this as an instance of evolution, like I have mentioned in one of my earlier posts. However, I was under the impression that you were making this distinction, because you objected to my saying that "it's not really natural selection but HIS selection".


      Quote Originally Posted by A Roxxor View Post
      Assuming he doesn't want to go through the enormously tedious process of testing each individual offspring on the beach, he has likely devised a shortcut where his genetic algorithm goes through several generations before giving him the most fit offspring as a result, which he then builds and tests.
      He only used a genetic algorithm that's what it sounds like from the description anyway to arrive at his eleven holy numbers. There's no mention that he uses the same technique for any other part of his project.


      Quote Originally Posted by A Roxxor View Post
      The things still 'evolve', just not in the traditional sense of evolving through population pressures slowly over time.
      But I think that is an important part of the very concept. Just recursively improving the best variants of something is not evolution.


      Quote Originally Posted by A Roxxor View Post
      Probably would it be such a stretch to assume he never explains it don't think it is that simple he has likely devised I actually don't know what he does
      You're making a lot of assumptions and guesses. Why are you so insistent that it is evolution, even though you have little idea about how he actually works? To me it seems unlikely that there is anything sophisticated going on, nothing like evolution, since I cannot find anything suggesting the contrary, not in his talk nor on his websites.

    20. #20
      Member nina's Avatar
      Join Date
      Aug 2004
      Gender
      Posts
      10,788
      Likes
      2583
      DJ Entries
      17
      Awesome. I want one to ride around on.

    21. #21
      Banned
      Join Date
      May 2007
      LD Count
      Loads
      Gender
      Location
      Digital Forest.
      Posts
      6,864
      Likes
      385
      Quote Originally Posted by illidan View Post
      He only used a genetic algorithm – that's what it sounds like from the description anyway – to arrive at his eleven holy numbers. There's no mention that he uses the same technique for any other part of his project.
      Uhh...

      - He said he used a genetic algorithm to generate the holy numbers
      - He mentions that each beast has a genetic code

      Why wouldn't he use a genetic algorithm on the genetic codes?

    22. #22
      Member Achievements:
      1 year registered 1000 Hall Points Veteran First Class
      illidan's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jul 2007
      Gender
      Location
      2046
      Posts
      135
      Likes
      2
      Quote Originally Posted by A Roxxor View Post
      Why wouldn't he use a genetic algorithm on the genetic codes?
      Because it is extremely difficult (virtually impossible I suspect) to define a fitness function for this problem.

      Also, genetic algorithms are inspired by evolution, but they are different from natural evolution. They don't incorporate effects like population pressure, which, as I've stated earlier, is an important part of evolution.

    23. #23
      Banned
      Join Date
      May 2007
      LD Count
      Loads
      Gender
      Location
      Digital Forest.
      Posts
      6,864
      Likes
      385
      Population pressure would be simulated by the beasts themselves when they are on the beach. Why do you think it's impossible for him to have an algorithm for reproduction, exactly?

    24. #24
      "O" will suffice. Achievements:
      1 year registered Made lots of Friends on DV Referrer Gold Veteran First Class Populated Wall Tagger First Class 25000 Hall Points Vivid Dream Journal
      Oneironaut Zero's Avatar
      Join Date
      Apr 2005
      LD Count
      20+ Years Worth
      Gender
      Location
      Central Florida
      Posts
      16,084
      Likes
      4025
      DJ Entries
      149
      This is pretty cool stuff.

      Quote Originally Posted by Xei View Post
      I'm not sure if he's kooky. He's an artist and so is inclined towards speaking quite metaphorically... people from places like The Netherlands can also speak like this habitually.
      That's exactly what I got out of it.

      Quote Originally Posted by Aquanina View Post
      Awesome. I want one to ride around on.
      I was thinking the same thing.
      http://i.imgur.com/Ke7qCcF.jpg
      (Or see the very best of my journal entries @ dreamwalkerchronicles.blogspot)

    25. #25
      Member Achievements:
      1 year registered 1000 Hall Points Veteran First Class
      illidan's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jul 2007
      Gender
      Location
      2046
      Posts
      135
      Likes
      2
      Quote Originally Posted by A Roxxor View Post
      Population pressure would be simulated by the beasts themselves when they are on the beach.
      Yes, but I'm not sure it would be very much like in real evolution, because the beasts cannot initiate reproduction on their own nor can they influence how much and how often they reproduce. So the genetic code would maybe determine the survival of an individual, but not the survival of a race.

      Quote Originally Posted by A Roxxor View Post
      Why do you think it's impossible for him to have an algorithm for reproduction, exactly?
      I'm not quite sure what you mean by "an algorithm for reproduction". I was merely saying that I think that he is not using a genetic algorithm for evolving his codes (for the reason stated in my last post). It is certainly possible to write an algorithm that mutates a given code (it won't be random, though, at least not on a classical computer).

      You are dragging this discussion away from "what he does" towards "what he could do". There is a lot he could do to approximate natural evolution. He would have to surrender every single aspect that involves a decision on his part to some sort of rule or law. It might be possible, but the evolution would be constrained by the universe he designed (which includes the rules and laws). But nothing you suggested so far sounds very realistic to me. You will have to show that no decision on his part is involved in his process and, as I've stated earlier, I don't think that's the case.

    Similar Threads

    1. New dude
      By BassGear in forum Introduction Zone
      Replies: 5
      Last Post: 01-19-2010, 03:13 AM
    2. New dude
      By JJill55 in forum Introduction Zone
      Replies: 6
      Last Post: 03-18-2009, 06:00 PM
    3. Dude Omg Look At This!
      By Brandon Heat in forum Senseless Banter
      Replies: 37
      Last Post: 12-20-2008, 07:20 PM
    4. Tell me how to make a steampunk GameBoy Color
      By Reality_is_a_Dream in forum Ask/Tell Me About
      Replies: 8
      Last Post: 10-21-2008, 11:41 PM

    Bookmarks

    Posting Permissions

    • You may not post new threads
    • You may not post replies
    • You may not post attachments
    • You may not edit your posts
    •