Slime Mold Map Making: Using Natural Behavior To Inspire Inter-City Planning

Using the slime mold Physarum polycephalum, researchers have been exploring new models for inter-city road planning.

Using the slime mold Physarum polycephalum, researchers at the University of the West of England in Bristol have been exploring new models for inter-city road planning. Researchers Jeff Jones and Andrew Adamatzky replicated a model of the UK from agar with a colony of P. polycephalum acting as London, and tracked the spread of the mold as it reached out to nine other populous cities marked by oat flakes. New Scientists reports that most of the resulting maps mimicked existing road networks, but some did offer novel routes.

[via New Scientist]

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