Baby chicks are way smarter than you think! Check this out..
With the many, many problems we are facing I've come to the conclusion that we are going to have to get way out of the box to find solutions.
A friend recently forwarded the following research about baby chicks to me that gives me incredable hope for what might be possalbe.
If you've ever raised baby chicks you know they only have a pea sized brain...
But if baby chicks can do this... imagine what we could do.
Here is the research (I hope you are sitting down - this is super amazing):
A French researcher, Rene Peoc’h, built a small robot. The robot moved around on wheels and was programmed to move in a series of random directions. At the end of each movement, it stopped, rotated through a randomly selected angle, and moved in a straight line for a randomly determined period before stopping, and so on, and so on. These movements were determined by a random-number generator inside the robot.
The path the robot traced out was recorded. And in control experiments, the robots movements randomly covered the entirety of the small arena as you would expect.
Now we start to get to the interesting part.
Newly hatched chicks (and lots of other young'uns) "imprint" on the first moving object they encounter. And as you know, they follow this imprinted "momma" around.
Peoc’h did a series of experiments where he got baby chicks to imprint on the robot. Naturally, the chicks wanted to follow the robot around. But in the experiments, Peoc'h stopped the chicks from doing so by putting them in a cage. From the cage the chicks could see the robot, but they could not move toward it.
Here is the mind blowing and incredibly hopeful part.
When the chicks were placed in a nearby cage and could see the robot, the robot's movements were no longer completely random, The chicks somehow made the robot move toward them (see the figure down below). The chicks desire to be near the robot somehow influenced the random-number generator so that the robot stayed close to the cage with the chicks in it.
Here is a drawing showing the movement of the robot
Note that control experiments where done where the chicks were not imprinted to the robot, and the robots movements were not affected.
In other experiments, Peoc'h kept non-imprinted chicks in the dark. He put a lighted candle on the top of the robot and put the chicks in the cage where they could see it. Since chicks prefer being in the light during the daytime they also "pulled" the robot toward them, to get more light.
Peoc'h also carried out experiments with rabbits in the cage where they could see the robot. And the rabbits also affected the robots movements.
To me, this is increadably exciting work. The power of intention of our minds is a factor which could completely turn around the world if as a community, we can come together and learn to focus.
I am note sure what the next steps are...
Here is a link to the Peoc'h research paper (in French unfortunately for us English speakers) http://psiland.free.fr/savoirplus/theses/peoch.pdf
WIRED Magazine has a more in depth article on consciousness affecting computers including work at Princeton University https://www.wired.com/1995/04/pear/
Here is a YouTube video of Peoc'h and his setup (again in French, but the visuals are worth it) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4dEget9UD7A
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