Zombie Math - Modeling The Attack
Finally, the zombie apocalypse has been quantified. A group of Canadian researchers have presented a sophisticated mathematical analysis of typical zombie attack scenarios.
Why would professionals attempt a treatment of this (fictional) problem?
This is, perhaps unsurprisingly, the ﬁrst mathematical analysis of an outbreak of zombie infection. While the scenarios considered are obviously not realistic, it is nevertheless instructive to develop mathematical models for an unusual outbreak. This demonstrates the ﬂexibility of mathematical modelling and shows how modelling can respond to a wide variety of challenges in ‘biology’.
First, of course, you must define your terms. What kind of zombies are we concerned about? Not those merely historical zombies.
Modern zombies (the ones illustrated in books, ﬁlms and games) are very different from the voodoo and the folklore zombies. Modern zombies follow a standard, as set in the movie Night of the Living Dead. The ghouls are portrayed as being mindless monsters who do not feel pain and who have an immense appetite for human ﬂesh. Their aim is to kill, eat or infect people. The ‘undead’ move in small, irregular steps, and show signs of physical decomposition such as rotting ﬂesh, discoloured eyes and open wounds. Modern zombies are often related to an apocalypse, where civilization could collapse due to a plague of the undead.
I think that the zombies in the recent film Shaun of the Dead meet the criteria.
(Shaun of the Dead Zombie Attack>)
They examine all of the usual scenarios; latent infection, forced quarantine of infected individuals, impulsive eradication models, the creation of a treatment or cure. Their conclusion?
In summary, a zombie outbreak is likely to lead to the collapse of civilisation, unless it is dealt with quickly. While aggressive quarantine may contain the epidemic, or a cure may lead to coexistence of humans and zombies, the most effective way to contain the rise of the undead is to hit hard and hit often. As seen in the movies, it is imperative that zombies are dealt with quickly, or else we are all in a great deal of trouble.
From When Zombies Attack!: Mathematical Modelling of an Outbreak of Zombie Infection via Wired. Thanks to Moira for pointing this one out.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 8/15/2009)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 2 )
Related News Stories -
Sex In Driverless Cars? Updated With Video!
'...admirable for petting.' - David H. Keller, 1935.
Xinhua AI Anchor Puts CGI Face To Automated News
'...a congeries of software agents.' - William Gibson, 1996.
Wirewax Watching You Watch, Adjusting Your Experience
'He adjusted the n, the r and b knobs, and hopefully anticipated a turn for the better...' - Philip K. Dick, 1964.
Disney Keeps Backups Of Star Wars Franchise Actors
'She is a personality-construct, a congeries of software agents...' - William Gibson, 1996.
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
North Focals Smart Glasses Provide Augmented Reality In Style
'The world ... is drenched in unfamiliar information all the way to the horizon.'
Tesla Driver Caught Napping Behind The Wheel
'Mary Risling settled back for a little nap...'
Hayabusa 2 To Begin Asteroid Mining
'We must dig down, and then doubtless we shall find the metal.'
Ionocraft Drone Powered By Electrohydrodynamic Thrust
'He saw one hiss by him as he rounded the corner, trailing a short whip antenna...'
Purdue Pharma Ready To Profit From OxyContin Use Or Addiction Recovery
'It may be organic damage. It may be permanent. Time'll tell, and only after you are off Substance D for a long while.'
BloxVox Mutes Cellphone Convos
It's the polite thing to do, and has been the polite thing to do for about four generations.
Superfast Replicator: Volumetric Additive Manufacturing
I can't wait. Bring it on.
DNA May Contain Malware
'You were told to embed the logical pathogen.'
I Can't Resist Worm Robots
'Seen close it was not completely flexible...'
Rplate Digital License Plates Now Legal In Michigan
'Gragg's digital ink license plates ...'
Can Musk Starship Astronauts Use Magnetic Boots?
'Walking awkwardly in the magnetic boots that held him to the black mass of meteoric iron...'
Giant Dolphin Spotted On Jupiter!
'Now at last he could appreciate its real size and complexity...'
Musk's Starship An SF Fan's Dream Come True
Perfect for testing, perfect for fans!
TinyMobileRobots Are Sewer Sentinels
Every movie monster gets its start someplace.
Fishy Facial Recognition Now Possible
'Palenkis can identify random line patterns better than any other species in the universe.'
Spicy Tomatoes Created With Genetic Engineering
How about mashed potatoes and brown gravy?
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories