Unbelievable video from the show Ants! Nature’s Secret Power. Cement is poured into a gigantic ant colony (we’re talking 538 sq.feet across!) and allowed to dry for a month. The anthill is then excavated to reveal the ants’ monstrous metropolis.
The complexity of the thing is incredible. Not only are the tunnels branched, interconnected, intertwined in a way that reminds me of Giger — but they even utilize compost heaps to power ventilation throughout the colony.
Now, if only I could create intelligent agents that collectively create structures like these. One of my independent research projects involves a simulation of agents modeled after natural insects. I’m able to have their cognitive faculties evolve to produce different levels of creativity — but it’s creative planning & problem solving without any kind of physical construction work. Getting them to architect hives like the above would be awesome.
Seriously, how the hell did they happen upon utilizing compost heaps as motors for ventilation?! So simple creatures, such mind-bending complexity.