Abstract:
We present some numerical results obtained from a simple individual based model that describes clustering of organisms caused by competition. Our aim is to show how, even when a deterministic description developed for continuum models predicts no pattern formation, an individual based model displays well defined patterns, as a consequence of fluctuations effects caused by the discrete nature of the interacting agents.

Abstract:
A facility to test the photomultiplier tubes (PMTs) for the solar neutrino detector Borexino was built at the Gran Sasso laboratory. Using the facility 2200 PMTs with optimal characteristics were selected from the 2350 delivered from the manufacturer. The details of the hardware used are presented.

Abstract:
We study a modified version of the Naming Game, a recently introduced model which describes how shared vocabulary can emerge spontaneously in a population without any central control. In particular, we introduce a new mechanism that allows a continuous interchange with the external inventory of words. A novel playing strategy, influenced by the hierarchical structure that individuals' reputation defines in the community, is implemented. We analyze how these features influence the convergence times, the cognitive efforts of the agents and the scaling behavior in memory and time.

Abstract:
We explore how the social dynamics of communication and learning can bring about the rise of a syntactic communication in a population of speakers. Our study is developed starting from a version of the Naming Game model where an elementary syntactic structure is introduced. This analysis shows how the transition from non-syntactic to syntactic communication is socially favored in communities which need to exchange a large number of concepts.

Abstract:
We introduce a simple open-ended model that describes the emergence of a shared vocabulary. The ordering transition toward consensus is generated only by an agreement mechanism. This interaction defines a finite and small number of states, despite each individual having the ability to invent an unlimited number of new words. The existence of a phase transition is studied by analyzing the convergence times, the cognitive efforts of the agents and the scaling behavior in memory and time

Abstract:
Boltzmann-Gibbs statistical mechanics is based on the entropy $S_{BG}=-k \sum_{i=1}^W p_i \ln p_i$. It enables a successful thermal approach of ubiquitous systems, such as those involving short-range interactions, markovian processes, and, generally speaking, those systems whose dynamical occupancy of phase space tends to be ergodic. For systems whose microscopic dynamics is more complex, it is natural to expect that the dynamical occupancy of phase space will have a less trivial structure, for example a (multi)fractal or hierarchical geometry. The question naturally arises whether it is possible to study such systems with concepts and methods similar to those of standard statistical mechanics. The answer appears to be {\it yes} for ubiquitous systems, but the concept of entropy needs to be adequately generalized. Some classes of such systems can be satisfactorily approached with the entropy $S_q=k\frac{1-\sum_{i=1}^W p_i^q}{q-1}$ (with $q \in \cal R$, and $S_1 =S_{BG}$). This theory is sometimes referred in the literature as {\it nonextensive statistical mechanics}. We provide here a brief introduction to the formalism, its dynamical foundations, and some illustrative applications. In addition to these, we illustrate with a few examples the concept of {\it stability} (or {\it experimental robustness}) introduced by B. Lesche in 1982 and recently revisited by S. Abe.

Abstract:
In this work we study on a 2-dimensional square lattice a recent version of the Naming Game, an agent-based model used for describing the emergence of linguistic structures. The system is open-ended and agents can invent new words all along the evolution of the game, picking them up from a pool characterised by a Gaussian distribution with standard deviation $\sigma$. The model displays a nonequilibrium phase transition at a critical point $\sigma_{c}\approx 25.6$, which separates an absorbing consensus state from an active fragmented state where agents continuously exchange different words. The finite-size scaling analysis of our simulations strongly suggests that the phase transition is discontinuous.

Abstract:
We introduce a simple computational model that, with a microscopic dynamics driven by natural selection and mutation alone, allows the description of true speciation events. A statistical analysis of the so generated evolutionary tree captures realistic features showing power laws for frequency distributions in time and size. Albeit these successful predictions, the difficulty in obtaining punctuated dynamics with mass extinctions suggests the necessity of decoupling micro and macro-evolutionary mechanisms in agreement with some ideas of Gould's and Eldredge's theory of punctuated equilibrium.

Abstract:
We introduce a multi-agent model for exploring how selection of neighbours determines some aspects of order and cohesion in swarms. The model algorithm states that every agents' motion seeks for an optimal distance from the nearest topological neighbour encompassed in a limited attention field. Despite the great simplicity of the implementation, varying the amplitude of the attention landscape, swarms pass from cohesive and regular structures towards fragmented and irregular configurations. Interestingly, this movement rule is an ideal candidate for implementing the selfish herd hypothesis which explains aggregation of alarmed group of social animals.