A goldfish successfully learns to drive a “car” that scientists are playfully calling an FOV or fish-operated vehicle. What’s impressive is that it managed to learn this in just 10 days! Wow. We’re impressed.
Goldfish Successfully Learns To Drive
Driving is a skill that many humans fail, yet a fish is making waves quite literally when it learned how to drive a “car” in just 10 days.
The FOV (fish-operated vehicle) was created by computer science professor Dr. Ohad Ben-Shahar at Ben-Gurion University.
Although it looks to many as if they’re wasting precious resources and time on playing games with a fish, they’re actually doing it for the future of space exploration.
The experiment can help humans navigate space in the future.
“How space is represented in the brain is the mechanism by which navigational decisions are made,” he explained.
“It’s indisputable that space should be represented somehow in the animal brain. But one of the fundamental questions that arises, is does this representation depend on the environment itself?”
To test this, they created a special fish tank with wheels that move based on the fish’s movement in a particular direction. The wheels are connected to a camera that detects the fish’s movement.
“So, if the fish saw a target, it should sort of touch the wall of the tank facing that direction, and then we could guide the wheels and move it that way,” he said.
It took the goldfish just 10 days to learn how to drive the “car.”
It managed to learn how to weave through the room and avoid obstacles to reach the other end. Impressive, huh?
Dr. Ben-Shahar said that the fish’s experience is similar to diving.
“It’s slightly different. But everybody who dives knows that perception changes when you go deep under water, and that’s purely for physical and optical reasons. It’s the same for the fish,” he explained.
“Once we took it out of its marine environment and put it in a complex terrestrial arena, then its perception changes. Now optics go through air and through the glass and then water, and everything seemed distorted.”
Watch the video here:
These days, many vehicles run without a human physically controlling the wheel. That’s achieved by computers, such as the Tesla autopilot.