They monitor with artificial intelligence how cobwebs are woven and discover the secrets of their intricate construction


November 15, 2021, 17:13 GMT

The biologists were able to predict, from the location of the spiders’ legs, what shape each new section of the web under construction would look like.

The complexity of spider web weaving has on many occasions been compared to the complexity of some human architectural constructions. Now, a team of scientists has turned to artificial intelligence to discover what’s behind these amazing ingenuity of spiders.

Unlike professional builders, many spiders are able to do their work in the dark, using only touch, and some even prefer to work in such complex conditions, according to another study Published in the journal Current Biology. In their research, the biologists used night vision cameras and special software to track their every move Several specimens of the species “Uloborusiversus” And capture the exotic styles of your night work.

This species is typical of Mexico and the western United States and is one of the few species that lacks poisonous glands used to immobilize prey. Monitoring allowed biologists to be able to. Predict, from the site of the legs of that virtuous hunter, what each new section of the web under construction will look like.

The scientists concluded that the tissue-making behavior of silk protein is similar among the representatives of the species examined. The lead author of the research, biologist Andrew Gordos of Johns Hopkins University (US), explained that although the final structure of each network is usually slightly different, the way it is built is predetermined.

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All these spiders use the same rules, something confirming that the rules are encoded in their brains, underlined Gordes.

For his part, researcher Abel Korver noted, “Spiders are wonderful because they are an animal with a brain built on the same basic pillars as our brain. [humano]Moreover, he believes that this work could provide “evidences on how to understand larger brain systems, including humans.”

However, documenting and systematically analyzing the behaviors and motor skills of such an animal, according to the team, is only the first step in understanding how these “relatively small” brains of “animal engineers” implement high-rise construction projects. the level.

At the moment, it is not known how these rules are encoded at the neural level, but specialists hope that future work will include other things. experiments To identify the systems in the spider’s brain responsible for the different stages of building its networks.

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