Human Swarm
Human Swarm
Human Swarm
Human Swarm

Human Swarm [2008]

In this performance a group of people behave according to simple local rules. These rules are based on swarming or flocking behaviour that’s seen in flocks of birds, ants, or a school of fish. Flocking is a particularly evocative example of emergence: where complex global behaviour can arise from the interaction of simple local rules. The local rules are based on the algorithm that Craig Reynolds has determined to create his boid software, which was used to create swarm like behaviour. In addition to this there are 3 rules concerning outside agents that can interfere with the 3 local rules. The performance deals with keywords like emergence, personal space, private space, group behaviour, bottom-top approach, boids & swarms.



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Script Proto-performance Human Swarm:

In this performance a group of people will behave according to simple local rules, that are based on swarming or flocking behaviour that is seen in flocks of birds, ants or a school of fish. Flocking is a particularly evocative example of emergence: where complex global behavior can arise from the interaction of simple local rules. The local rules are based on the algorithm that Craig Reynolds has determined to create his boid software, which was used to create a swarm like behaviour that we see in flocks of birds or fish. In addition to this there will also be 3 rules concerning outside agents that can interfere with the 3 local rules.

Set-up:

  • Garden of KABK: the part with the grass which is marked with the white line is the area in which the performers can walk.
  • All the participants of the swarm will wear a white mask, that limits the sight to the ground with a diameter of a maximum of 1.5 meter.

Starting point:

  • All participants will start at a position on the marked white line of the grid in the garden, as spread out as possible.
  • They will enter the grid when they are tapped on the back.
  • They will keep walking till they see surrounding feet on the ground.
  • The 3 local rules will then be applied.

Behaviour:

  • All the participants of the swarm will behave according to the 3 local rules:

3 local rules:

1) Separation: steer to avoid crowding local flockmates (no closer than 50 cm of feet within sight)
2) Alignment: steer towards the average heading of local flockmates (check average direction of feet within sight)
3) Cohesion: steer to move toward the average position of local flockmates (keep within 150 cm of feet within sight)

In case of loosing sight of your neighbours, you should keep on walking till you see feet again.

  • There will be 3 outside agents that can overrule the 3 local rules, as long as they are apparent:

3 outside agents:

1) Red Feet: this means danger and the performers must walk away as long as they see the Red Feet.
2) Green Feet: this means food and the performers must follow as long as they see the Green Feet.
3) Gong Sound: when this sound is played all the performers who hear the sound must flea away from the source of the sound.