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Morphology-induced collective behaviors: dynamic pattern formation in water-floating elements


Nakajima, Kohei; Tientcheu, Aubery; Miyashita, Shuhei; Göldi, Maurice; Füchslin, Rudolf Marcel; Pfeifer, Rolf (2012). Morphology-induced collective behaviors: dynamic pattern formation in water-floating elements. PLoS ONE, 7(6):e37805.

Abstract

Complex systems involving many interacting elements often organize into patterns. Two types of pattern formation can be distinguished, static and dynamic. Static pattern formation means that the resulting structure constitutes a thermodynamic equilibrium whose pattern formation can be understood in terms of the minimization of free energy, while dynamic pattern formation indicates that the system is permanently dissipating energy and not in equilibrium. In this paper, we report experimental results showing that the morphology of elements plays a significant role in dynamic pattern formation. We prepared three different shapes of elements (circles, squares, and triangles) floating in a water-filled container, in which each of the shapes has two types: active elements that were capable of self-agitation with vibration motors, and passive elements that were mere floating tiles. The system was purely decentralized: that is, elements interacted locally, and subsequently elicited global patterns in a process called self-organized segregation. We showed that, according to the morphology of the selected elements, a different type of segregation occurs. Also, we quantitatively characterized both the local interaction regime and the resulting global behavior for each type of segregation by means of information theoretic quantities, and showed the difference for each case in detail, while offering speculation on the mechanism causing this phenomenon.

Abstract

Complex systems involving many interacting elements often organize into patterns. Two types of pattern formation can be distinguished, static and dynamic. Static pattern formation means that the resulting structure constitutes a thermodynamic equilibrium whose pattern formation can be understood in terms of the minimization of free energy, while dynamic pattern formation indicates that the system is permanently dissipating energy and not in equilibrium. In this paper, we report experimental results showing that the morphology of elements plays a significant role in dynamic pattern formation. We prepared three different shapes of elements (circles, squares, and triangles) floating in a water-filled container, in which each of the shapes has two types: active elements that were capable of self-agitation with vibration motors, and passive elements that were mere floating tiles. The system was purely decentralized: that is, elements interacted locally, and subsequently elicited global patterns in a process called self-organized segregation. We showed that, according to the morphology of the selected elements, a different type of segregation occurs. Also, we quantitatively characterized both the local interaction regime and the resulting global behavior for each type of segregation by means of information theoretic quantities, and showed the difference for each case in detail, while offering speculation on the mechanism causing this phenomenon.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:03 Faculty of Economics > Department of Informatics
Dewey Decimal Classification:000 Computer science, knowledge & systems
Language:English
Date:2012
Deposited On:13 Feb 2013 12:10
Last Modified:07 Aug 2017 03:28
Publisher:Public Library of Science (PLoS)
ISSN:1932-6203
Free access at:PubMed ID. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0037805
PubMed ID:22715370
Other Identification Number:merlin-id:7854

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Licence: Creative Commons: Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)