"Critical care" Exhibition in D-Art 2015 Vienna
DIY NEURAL NETWORKS Augusto ZUBIAGA, Lourdes CILLERUELO, Itsaso MADARIAGA, Miriam PEÑA. University of the Basque Country UPV/EHU
This workshop will take the form of a collaborative exercise in which opto-elec- tronic circuits that simulate the functioning of biological neurons will be pro- duced. Each connected neural unit visibly influences the total network behavior, making the nature of biological computing perceptible to the participants in a visible way (neuronal pacemakers, afferent and efferent nerve impulses, reflex arcs, etc). This system becomes so complex that the immense challenge of trying to address biological computer keys is evident, thus bringing us closer to an aes- thetic of the immeasurable, based on analog models that emulate the interaction between the simple and the complex (neuron and neuronal network, individual and society). The workshop will include an in-situ demonstration in which a neu- ron that has an axon and several excitatory and inhibitory synapses that can be connected via optical fiber will be made physically. Then a set of neurons made in advance will be offered to participants, so they can experiment with various connective configurations and draw their own conclusions.
KEYWORDS: DIY Neurons, Complexity, Opto-electronics, Biology.
DESIRED PROBLEMS: AN ARTISTIC EXPERIENCE IN THE FIELD OF NEURAL NETWORKS Lourdes CILLERUELO, Augusto ZUBIAGA, Miriam PEÑA, Itsaso MADARIAGA. University of the Basque Country UPV/EHU New models of educational research must take due account of the progressive integration of the arts within the framework of the scientific disciplines (STEM to STEAM). In this context art education practices are understood as sites for channeling and developing many forms of knowledge and know-how, and artistic methodologies are viewed as essential for defining criteria of excellence, inno- vation and technological development. The STE(A)M movement offers a new conceptual framework that takes ‘desired problems’ as a starting point, and in which curiosity becomes the driver and guide of knowledge acquisition, and acts a springboard for exploring multiple solutions in an ongoing quest for person- al satisfaction. The new model empowers imagination and draws attention to the process of experimentation, or ‘making’. In this presentation we describe the practice of designing and developing neuron prototypes, using simple low-tech resources that are easily replicated across learning environments. This project enabled us to understand how simple neurons are, and how to configure the networks found in biological organisms in different ways. It has also encouraged production of pieces of technological art and provided material for reflection and development in scientific publications.
KEYWORDS Cross-Disciplinary Practice, Making, Curiosity-Driven Learning.