|Natural systems process information in
ways that are unrivaled by current computers. They learn
to recognize relevant patterns, they remember patterns
that have been seen previously, construct internal models
of their environments, use combinatorics effectively, and
their data and control structures are massively parallel
and highly distributed. Examples of such systems are widespread
in biology (including neuroscience, vision, immunology and
ecology), physics, chemistry, and social systems.
We seek both to understand these natural processes and to apply their organizing principles in computation. The adaptive computation group at UNM has a special interest in interactions between biology and computation. We believe that modern computer systems have many properties in common with living systems and should be engineered accordingly. Thus, we emphasize concrete implementations of our ideas, building real systems, and solving real computer systems problems. Modeling projects in the group range from abstract "artificial-life" style models that capture qualitative properties to much more detailed models based on real data that make quantitative predictions. The group has close ties with UNM's Biology Department and the Santa Fe Institute.