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Exp_1.6 Visualizing EMF with Processing

Purpose - Visualize the strength of the double source from Exp 1.5 EM field output graphically.

Set Up - Use Arduino EMF detector from Exp 1.1 to output serial data in proportion to level of EM field.  Use Processing to receive this serial data and visualize it via a simple bar graph.

Resources -
Code:
Arduino: Graph_Serial_01
Processing: Graph_Serial_01
Video Documentation

Video 1
The first video documents a double node system where the antennae are 6 inches apart from each other.  In this first video they are powered by two separate 555 circuits wired as oscillators as explored in Exp 1.5.  The input voltage is 14 volts DC, and each circuit outputs an approximately 5 volt (peak to peak) square wave at about 166Hz with a 66% HIGH / 33% LOW duty cycle.


Video 2
This second video further investigates different antenna and power configurations to further understand and verify field superposition.  SEE sketches at right for main conclusions of this second investigation.

This video rambles a bit, so I've highlighted the more important points with direct links to their demonstration in the video below:
  • The critical point regarding the nature of superimposed fields can be found starting at 5:36 in the video below.  Again, this point is made much more clearly in the sketches at right.
  • Another point is the use of a single oscillator to power both emitter antennae, which can I discuss briefly at 2:14.
  • Related to the first point above, it matters how far apart the nodes are (and how strong the Electrical field is).  I began to realize this here at 7:09.
  • A very important behavior of this circuit is that the E field will drop off proportional to a decrease in input voltage.  This will prove very useful for the implementation of Exp. 1.  I demonstrate this relationship at 11:11.
  • I discuss a little theory here at 12:44 and how it relates to voltage levels and the finicky nature of analog.  I suggest and will investigate algorithms that can adjust the system's sensitivity in order to maintain the capacity to discern the distinct nature of the E field.
  • A final practical point about the physical configuration of the system at 14:18 and how it can affect its behavior.


Modifications to Example Code
  • Modified Arduino and Processing code to use the same analog pin 0 (A0).
  • Modified map() from 1028 to 255, which is what the Arduino A0 outputs in order to use the entire window height.
  • Modified the width of the output window to 1200 pixels to more easily track changes in the EMF.  I changed this parameter for video 2 to 1900 pixels to span my screen.
Sketch of Electric Field Distribution for Different Antennae Geometries

Experiment 1.6 Sketch
  (right-click and open in new tab/window for larger image)

Discussion
This experiment into implementation is the first empirical demonstration of a fundamental concept of cognition.  Specifically, the behavior of so-called parts within a cognitive system must simultaneously be distinct from each other while their shared behavior must be distinct from their common surroundings.  The superimposed E field in the 4" spread with about 10 Volts supply in the above sketch empirically illustrates exactly this.

The E field being emitted by each node in the 4" spread is distinct from the other node, unlike the 2" spread.  At the same time, the pair of nodes in the 4" spread exhibits a superimposed E field that is distinct from their common surrounding field values, unlike the 6" spread.  In other words, the distinction between each node in the 2" spread is very slight and could easily be lost due to noise within the system.  As such, the pair of nodes resembles a single event against its surroundings.  On the other hand, the distinction between nodes in the 6" spread are so distinct that the pair as a unit has no strong distinction from their surroundings.  The 4" spread, however, exhibits both distinctness of each individual node and distinctness of the pair together against their local surrounding; as a result, they are both distinct and integrated, simultaneously.

It will be shown throughout this and subsequent experiments, that this "both/and" behavior can scale to higher orders of complexity to exhibit a fundamental aspect of, not just cognition, but nature itself.  Namely, a ubiquitous attribute of physical reality is that it is composed of not just objects, but relationships between these objects at the same exact time.  It will be argued that, not only is this typical of nature, it is a necessary attribute of self-adaptive and cognitive systems.

Update 12/17/11
In Video 2, at left, I mentioned possible feedback in order to keep the system operating in a useful range.  I neglected to point out that such feedback is fundamental to cognition, and that my overall theory and proposed design account for this to a large extent.  Summary 04, at the end, covers a number of feedback mechanisms intended to keep the system in working homeostasis so as to maximize learning over time.

I also speculated in Video 2 that each emitter node might share a common source.  This statement must be clarified.  It is correct that the system as a whole can be powered by a single DC source.  However, each emitter must have their own oscillator, which in the implementation so far is a 555 IC wired to oscillate at about 166Hz.  This is because each emitter must act independently depending on to what degree they are stimulated by sensory inputs, e.g. the capacitive sensing in Exp. 1.  This will be implemented around sub-experiment 1.10.
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