Thursday, November 16, 2006

Jumping Spiders: an enigma of the natural world

Thoughts and notes on the Jumping spider - implications for the development of "cognitive robotics"?

Engages in planning, and other 'intelligent' behaviour which seems inexplicable given that the brain of the spider is the size of a pinhead, i.e.very small. They do however have independantly moving eyes (what is the structure of these?), each of which on its own is larger in size than its brain. Does the eye in itself provide an additional means of 'processing' information for the brain to enable more complex behaviour? Does the spider, through development from egg to adult, exhibit developmental learning (learning from experience), and does behaviour appear to be 'hard-wired' as with other insects (cognitive development occurs accross multiple generations rather than with a single generation)?

BBC documentary, approx 2pm, Sunday 12th November 2006, "Spiders from Mars" (not sure about this reference, sorry, con't find the BBC page on it...)

Link: Wikipedia article and Jumping Spiders of the World

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