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GPS solves the Sheepdog Mystery

by GPS4US 2014-09-12 14:53

GPS helps us answer the questions that need answering.

Like this: How does a Sheepdog manage to corral dozens of sheep and get them moving toward one target?

Well, guess what: GPS just answered that question.

An article from “Time Magazine” discusses a new study from Britain’s Royal society that attached GPS units to
sheepdogs and tracked their movements while the dogs controlled an unruly flock.

The key, according to the study, is the dog’s side-to-side weaving at the rear of the flock, before driving them
forward in unison.

“If not cohesive, it will make it cohesive,” said the study’s co-author Daniel Stroembaum. “But if it’s already
cohesive, the dog will push the herd toward the target.”

The “Sheepdog mystery” is actually a thing, and scientists have been trying to figure it out for years.  Mission
accomplished. The study figures a really good sheepdog could corral a flock of up to 100.

Hmm, wonder if there’s any good device to use to train a dog for these kinds of tasks.

Now here’s the really interesting part: Researchers believe their findings may apply to future crowd control
projects, including guiding groups of exploring robots across remote terrains, according to Time.

Sheepdogs may indeed teach us how to properly handle robots. Nature and technology are a powerful combination.

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