Scientists translated bat screeches and learned they argue a lot about food and sex

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2020/11/30/scientists-translated-bat-screeches-and-learned-they-argue-a-lot-about-food-and-sex.html

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I wish they’d apply that same science to dolphins and whales.

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Since it isn’t linked in the post:

ETA: The link has been added to the OP.
Full article for anyone interested
https://www.nature.com/articles/srep39419

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But did they run sufficient controls to determine that it isn’t the ML approach that’s horny and territorial?

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I was just thinking about the inherent bias in this, correlating activity/behavior to temporal locality of call. That said, they used 24-hr audio/video surveillance of fruit bats spanning months, which is… fairly comprehensive.

We found that bat vocalizations carry ample information about the identity of the emitter, the context of the call, the behavioral response to the call, and even the call’s addressee. Our results underline the importance of studying the mundane, pairwise, directed, vocal interactions of animals.

That’s actually pretty neat. Still don’t understand why someone would think they were just random sounds. Somewhat similar to the comic someone linked above… I wonder if we were to do the same analysis of all frequencies of a dog’s communication, might we discover the true BarkNet?

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My mother wanted to start using computers to do just that, but instead became the first, if not one of the first female computer techs.

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so, pretty similar to people then, huh?

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At least they have more to talk about than seagulls

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I think they just missed when they talked about darkness and cuddles…

bat-darkness-cuddles

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In our ideal future we will look back without shame or judgment at our current selves as absolutely soaked in ignorance and arrogance.

Ooh, story, please!

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Her father was an auto mechanic.

During the 70s there were lots of tv ads for Control Data, a school that taught computer stuff: software writing, repair, etc. Can’t remember whether it was a one-. one and a half-, or two-year class she took. She got 100% on all her tests but one, including exams, and I think she got 98 or 99% on it.
When they had their job fair thingy for the new graduates, several companies were courting her bigtime. They had told their students to ask for $10,000/yr salary. She asked the Burroughs guy (she was more inclined toward them than any of t’others) for either $11 or $11.5k. His eyebrows went up and he told her, “Oh, I think we can do better than that.”
She was supposed to be a teacher, but they made her a tech.
The last working day before her first day, her new boss held a meeting w/her new coworkers. “Well, they’re sending us A Woman.” Much grumbling ensued. “Now, listen, I don’t like it any more than you do. Things are changing, and we have to put up with it. She probably won’t last, anyway.”
The first visit she’d pay a customer w/a broken machine would involve horrid misogynistic remarks/treatment. "You’re here to fix it?! A Woman?!"was her all but universal greeting. A couple white men even called her bosses to complain. They were evidently told to STFU. She said the women were usually the worst offenders.
After a couple calls, customers began saying, “Oh, thank God it’s you, Gloria! Now I know it will get fixed!”
She learned that her boss, the one who’d held the meeting ref’d above, had bragged about her when he attended out of town training. A fellow student, on meeting mom, said with awe, “You’re Gloria? Gloria from Headquarters? I heard you can fix anything that moves!”
She had many brilliant stories about fixing stuff, but my favorite involves her meeting with a prototype computer. It came from France. It was in a fancy meeting room fulla fancy honchos, for whom this new machine was sposed to be shown off. They had been told to let no one but mom touch it. XD On learning it was French, mom said, “I can’t fix this! I don’t know how to swear in French! Unless…” She’d already taken off the top housing, and leaned over, looking at the chips in the board to make sure they were all properly seated. She saw one was indeed sticking up higher than the rest, so she pushed it down into place with her thumb, popped the cover back on, and it powered right up.
She then learned that a few guys had been working on it for days, with all kindsa diagnostic equipment. :slight_smile:

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Badass. Thanks for sharing.

“Did you jiggle the handle?”

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