What Google could learn from a fruit fly

By tapping into life’s algorithms, scientists are finding elegant solutions to some of the hardest problems in computer science.

Let’s say you’re at a big office party full of people, both coworkers and strangers, when someone walks up to you. You have a split second to determine if you know this person or not; you don’t want to make the faux pas of re-introducing yourself to your receptionist. Luckily, your brain is adept at what computer scientists call “novelty detection”—the ability to distinguish new information from details that have been encountered before. Most of the time we do it effortlessly. 

Christie Wilcox