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25 FEBRUARY 2016

Universal resilience patterns in complex networks

"Resilience, a system's ability to adjust its activity to retain its basic functionality when errors, failures and environmental changes occur, is a defining property of many complex systems. Despite widespread consequences for human health, the economy and the environment, events leading to loss of resilience—from cascading failures in technological systems to mass extinctions in ecological networks—are rarely predictable and are often irreversible. These limitations are rooted in a theoretical gap: the current analytical framework of resilience is designed to treat low-dimensional models with a few interacting components, and is unsuitable for multi-dimensional systems consisting of a large number of components that interact through a complex network. Here we bridge this theoretical gap by developing a set of analytical tools with which to identify the natural control and state parameters of a multi-dimensional complex system, helping us derive effective one-dimensional dynamics that accurately predict the system's resilience. The proposed analytical framework allows us systematically to separate the roles of the system's dynamics and topology, collapsing the behaviour of different networks onto a single universal resilience function. The analytical results unveil the network characteristics that can enhance or diminish resilience, offering ways to prevent the collapse of ecological, biological or economic systems, and guiding the design of technological systems resilient to both internal failures and environmental changes."

(Jianxi Gao, Baruch Barzel & Albert-László Barabási, 17 February 2016, Nature)

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2016Albert-Laszlo Barabasi • Baruch Barzel • biological systems • cascading failure • Cognitive Visualization Lab • complex networkscomplex systems • critical phenomena • data visualisationdroughtecological balance • ecological networks • ecological sustainability • ecological systems • ecosystemenvironmental changeenvironmental statisticsextinctionglobal issuesIBM • IBM Watson • interrelationships • irreversible change • Jianxi Gao • loss of resilience • Mauro Martino • multidimensional systems • network dynamics • network earth • network ecologynetwork model • network relationships • networked interaction • nonlinear phenomena • Northeastern University • one-dimensional dynamics • phase transitions • resiliencespeciationsustainability • system collapse • technological systems • universal resilience function • universal resilience patterns • visual explanations • visual representation graphicallyvisual representations of scientific conceptsvisualising data • wildfire

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
25 APRIL 2015

Supersymmetry: a immersive aesthetic experience by Ryoji Ikeda

"Supersymmetry attempts to transform the complexity of quantum information theory into an immersive aesthetic experience, meshing sound, visual data and high-speed light displays. The show pairs two inter-related installations. As you step into the cavernous, pitch-black space at the top of Brewer Street Car Park in Soho, you're confronted by [experiment]. Three 1m x 1m light boxes, glowing white, skitter and whoosh with tiny ball bearings, forming unique and unpredictable patterns. It's a disorientating experience, leaving you feeling adrift in such a frenetic space, with red lasers constantly scanning the surface movements.

As you step through the curtain into the next space, [experience], you're plunged into the middle of two 20m-long screens, blinking with forty monitors, all displaying how the previous room's data has been analysed and translated. The synchronized monitors pulse with high-speed analyses and typed text, while the electronic soundscape -- a symphony of bleeps, buzzes and droning hums -- adds to the charged atmosphere. The overall effect, as you glance at the mutating text and the rapid-fire bombardment of data, is both hypnotic and hallucinatory, and yet there's also something strangely oppressive about being caught in this endless loop of sound and information."

(Daniel Culpan, 23 April 2015, Wired)

"Supersymmetry" by Ryoji Ikeda, 2015. The exhibition runs at The Vinyl Factory Space at Brewer Street Car Park, London, W1F 0LA, until 31 May 2015.

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2015aesthetic experienceart and scienceart exhibitionartist in residence • artistic response • austere ambienceball bearings • beeps • bleeps • buzzes • CERN • charged atmosphere • complexity • dark space • disorientating experience • droning • electronic soundscape • emotionally empty art • endless loop • hallucinatory • Higgs boson • humming • hyper-sensory experience • hypnoticimmersive aesthetic experience • Japanese artist • Japanese visual artist • Large Hadron Collider • light installationlight pulseslightboxmodernist aesthetics • multistorey building • particle accelerator • particle research • physics • quantum information theory • Ryoji Ikeda • sound and imagestrobing • Supersymmetry (2015) • symmetry • The Vinyl Factory • unique patterns • unpredictable patterns • visual artistvisual representations of scientific conceptsvisual spectacular • whooshes • Wired (magazine)

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
04 MARCH 2015

SandyStation: an augmented reality sandbox

"Jedná se unikátní projekt dvou studentů, Petra Altmana a Roberta Ecksteina z fakulty aplikovaných vÄ›d Západočeské univerzity v Plzni, kteÅ™í jej prezentují pod názvem SandyStation. Jde zÅ™ejmÄ› o vůbec první pískovištÄ› na svÄ›tÄ›, u kterého můžete upravovat zdrojový kód, pÅ™ehrávat firmware a pÅ™edevším maximálnÄ› propustit uzdu své fantazii :–).

SandyStation efektivním způsobem využívá senzorů Kinectu, který je umístÄ›ný ve výšce zhruba 2 metrů nad boxem s obyčejným pískem a používá se ke sledování hloubky na snímané ploše. Pokud na pískovišti udÄ›láte tÅ™eba bábovku nebo vyhloubíte díru, Kinect tuto informaci zpracuje a pÅ™edá unikátnímu programu, jež objekty rozpozná a následnÄ› pošle potÅ™ebná data projektoru a vykreslí obraz do prostoru pískovištÄ›. To vše se dÄ›je téměř okamžitÄ› v reakci na činnost, kterou uživatel na pískovišti vykoná."

And as translated from Czech to English using Google Translate: "This is a unique project of two students, Peter Altman and Robert Eckstein from the Faculty of Applied Sciences, University of West Bohemia, who present it under the name SandyStation. This is probably the first ever sand in the world, where you can edit the source code, firmware and play primarily lay off up to your imagination :–).

SandyStation effective use of the Kinect sensor, which is situated at a height of about 2 metres above the box with ordinary sand and is used to monitor the depth on the scanned surface. If the sandbox you do need a cake or drilling our hole, Kinect processes this information and passes a unique programme that recognizes objects and then sends the necessary data projector and paint a picture of the space sandbox. It all happens almost instantly in response to the action that the user performs the sandbox."

(JiÅ™í Hrma, 28 November 2011)

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2011applied sciences • AR Interactive Sandbox • augmented reality • colourful landscapes • contour linesCzech Republicdigital media experiencesexploratory learning experienceexplore and interactinteractive environmentsinteractive projection • interactive sandbox • kid-oriented experiences • Kinect 3D • Kinect sensor • object-based discoveryobject-based learningoverhead projector works • Peter Altman • Robert Eckstein • sand • sandbox • SandyStation • scientific visualisationtactile interactivetopographytoy • University of West Bohemia • video processing framework • video trackingvirtual modelvisual representations of scientific conceptsvolcano • Vrui VR • Xbox Kinect

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
23 FEBRUARY 2014

Beautiful Science: Picturing Data, Inspiring Insight

20 February – 26 May 2014, Folio Society Gallery; admission free, London.

"Turning numbers into pictures that tell important stories and reveal the meaning held within is an essential part of what it means to be a scientist. This is as true in today's era of genome sequencing and climate models as it was in the 19th century.

Beautiful Science explores how our understanding of ourselves and our planet has evolved alongside our ability to represent, graph and map the mass data of the time.

From John Snow's plotting of the 1854 London cholera infections on a map to colourful depictions of the tree of life, discover how picturing scientific data provides new insight into our lives."

(The British Library)

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17th century • 1854 • 185819th centurybattlefield • Beautiful Science (exhibition) • big dataBritish Librarycartographychart • cholera • climate models • climate science • colourful depictions • Crimean War • datadata journalismdata visualisation • David McCandless • David Spiegelhalter • diseaseevolutionexhibition • Florence Nightingale • genome • genome sequencing • graph • Great Chain of Being (1617) • hierarchical visualisationhospitalillustrated diagramsinfographicinteractive visualisationinterpret meaningsinterpreting data • Johanna Kieniewicz • John Snow • London • Luke Howard • maps • Martin Krzywinski • mass data • Nigel ShadboltOpen Data Institute • picturing data • picturing scientific data • public health • Robert Fludd • rose diagram • Sally Daviesscience • science collections • science exhibition • seeing is believing • statisticstechnological changetree of lifeturning numbers into meaningvisual interpretationvisual representationvisual representation graphicallyvisual representations of scientific conceptsvisualising dataweather • William Farr • Winton Capita

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
04 FEBRUARY 2014

This Thing Called Science: videos to explain scientific concepts

"TechNyou is a free information service to help raise awareness about emerging technologies and associated issues, for example GM foods, stem cells, gene therapy, cloning, synthetic biology and nanotechnologies."

The series includes: This Thing Called Science Part 1: Call me skeptical; This Thing Called Science Part 2: Testing, testing 1–2–3; This Thing Called Science Part 3: Blinded by Science; This Thing Called Science Part 4: Confidently Uncertain; This Thing Called Science Part 5: Do the right thing; This Thing Called Science Part 6: Citizen Science.

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CONTRIBUTOR

Liam Birtles
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