An SFI working group explores the parallels between ancient and modern societies’ challenges in managing risk and what lessons might be found there.
Identifying meaningful information is a key challenge to disciplines from biology to artificial intelligence. In a new paper, SFI's Artemy Kolchinsky and David Wolpert propose a broadly applicable, fully formal definition for this kind of semantic information.
October 13-16, graduate students can meet with leading scientists to learn about modeling and evaluating the future of human populations and their environments. Free tuition for accepted students. Apply before July 11, 2018.
A group of ecologists, cultural anthropologists, geoscientists, and archaeologists studying the unique and myriad ways that humans interact with other species across space and time meets for the third time at SFI.
An SFI workshop examines the key impediments to building machines that understand meaning, and how much understanding is necessary for artificially intelligent machines to approach human-level abilities in language, perception, and reasoning.
A new study suggests that defenses against extreme temperatures give E. coli bacteria an advantage in fending off certain drugs.
The bane of the language-learner is a goldmine for linguists, cultural evolutionists, and computer scientists, a group of whom will meet at SFI Aug. 27–28, 2018. Given the messy state of linguistic affairs, they ask, is it possible to quantitatively encode “meaning” independent of any particular language?
An SFI Working Group examines the evidence of low-density Maya settlements and the challenge this poses to the idea that density increases with population.
The notion that an attractive person is “out of your league” doesn’t often dissuade dating hopefuls – at least online. In fact, the majority of online daters seek out partners who are more desirable than themselves, suggests a new large-scale analysis published in Science Advances.
A-list for ALIFE: Steen Rasmussen receives Lifetime Achievement Award from International Society for Artificial Life
July 26-28, an interdisciplinary group of researchers gathers at SFI to explore the relationship between aging and infectious disease.
Neuroscientists and complexity scientists meet to develop new tools for studying the brain as a complex network. Their working group, titled “Cognitive Regime Shift: When the Brain Breaks,” is part of SFI’s Aging, Adaptation, and the Arrow of Time research theme, funded by the James S. McDonnell Foundation.
Parakeet pecking orders, basketball match-ups, and the tenure-track: How analyzing winners and losers can reveal rank within networks
In a paper published in Science Advances, researchers from the Santa Fe Institute describe a new algorithm called SpringRank that uses wins and losses to quickly find rankings lurking in large networks. When tested on a wide range of synthetic and real-world datasets, ranging from teams in an NCAA college basketball tournament to the social behavior of animals, SpringRank outperformed other ranking algorithms in predicting outcomes and in efficiency.
Polygyny has been more common among relatively egalitarian low-tech horticulturalists than in highly unequal, capital-intensive agricultural societies. This surprising fact is known as the "polygyny paradox," and a new study from SFI's Dynamics of Wealth Inequality Project provides a possible resolution of the puzzle.
This question of how the collective influences individual performance is central to the work of SFI’s investigation into the limits of human performance. In a workshop that takes place June 25-27, experts from a range of disciplines, including physiology, organizational behavior, sports analytics and applied mathematics, explore how the collective affects the individual.