Representing the NCCR Evolving Language at Scientifica, Zürich
On the 2nd and 3rd of September 2023, researchers from the NCCR Evolving Language got to showcase the research conducted in the center to the visitors of Scientifica, a science fair that amassed 20’000 visitors this year! Through four activities on the NCCR booth and a round table, interesting discussions sparked.
On the NCCR booth, visitors were able to discuss with researchers from various fields of work like computationnal sciences, neurosciences, psychology, biology or ethology.
They could also try out a wide range of activities: participating in the creation of a collaborative word network, trying to outsmart a computer with word puzzles, playing a video game designed to better reading as well as testing their focus abilities, watching footage with 3D vocalizations of orcas and whales, guessing the calls of different animals and what makes them similar, learning about how meerkats communicate and about how they take decisions as a group.
Watching the video presenting the NCCR, created by Robbie l’Anson Price
Talking about how meerkats communicate
Discussing programs replicating the mecanisms for semantics of the human brain
Listening to animal vocalisations
Playing a video game that can better reading skills
Learning about how meerkats take collective decisions to move in group
Creating a word network with the visitors
Debating over animal communication
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Discussion with the public
Finally, the NCCR PIs Klaus Zuberbuhler, Marta Manser and Richard Hahnloser participated in a round table, discussing communication in the animal kingdom. Through their expertise of different species (primates, meerkats and birds, respectively), the public was able to get a good grasp on the different ways animals communicate and why they’re interesting for us to study.