The DiODe team are organising a conference on Collective Decision-Making to mark the close of the project. This will take place in Sheffield on May 20th and 21st, and features an extensive line-up of high-profile interdisciplinary speakers.
In this paper we study how decisions can be affected by varying frequencies and magnitudes of a perceptual stimulus in a simulated binary choice task. As a result we find that reaction time distributions may resemble the periodicity of the external stimulus. The article is fully open access.
This paper studies a model animal choosing between different food sources in an ongoing decision-making process. The decision-making circuit regulating the response is implemented via a generic neural hardware motif. Nonlinearities in the circuit influence the behaviour of the model animal. We find the unexpected result that inherent oscillations of neuronal activity may enhance decision-making performance.
The paper Simulating Kilobots within ARGoS: models and experimental validation by Carlo Pinciroli, M. Salah Talamali, Andreagiovanni Reina, James Marshall, and Vito Trianni proposes a new plugin for the ARGoS simulator that allows users to simulate Kilobots in a fast and realistic way, to use the same code in simulation and on robots, and to simulate the ARK infrastructure along with the Kilobots.
Giovanni co-ordinated a team of University of Sheffield and Sheffield Hallam University students who produced a new short film using our Kilobots. This was premiered at the Sheffield Robotics Showcase on June 26th, and is available to watch on the DiODe project You Tube channel…
Looking at honeybees in a colony as if they were neurons in a brain could help understand the basic mechanisms of human behaviour. A bee colony can be considered as a single superorganism, composed of tens of thousands of bees, which displays a coordinated response to external stimuli. Our recent paper, published in Scientific Reports and authored by Andreagiovanni Reina, Thomas Bose, Vito Trianni, and James Marshall, has shown that honeybee colonies might respond to stimuli in the same way other organisms, such as humans, do. The superorganism response is the result of interactions between individual bees; finding which type of interactions generate brain-like responses helps researchers to identify the general mechanisms generating these responses, and may ultimately lead to a better understanding of our brain.
James’ article on individual confidence in collective decisions, with Gavin Brown (Manchester) and Andy Radford (Bristol), is the cover featured article for the September issue of Trends in Ecology and Evolution.
A new Opinion on individual confidence and collective decision-making is in press in Trends in Ecology and Evolution, authored by James together with Andy Radford (Bristol) and Gavin Brown (Manchester).
The Opinion argues for the consideration of subjective confidence and its influence on communication within collectively-deciding groups. The Opinion also draws links between confidence by individually-optimal decision-makers, and the optimal confidence-based weighting scheme for group decisions.