Chris Interviewed by American Physical Society: Breeding a Better Robot

Today, true artificial intelligence proliferates only in fiction. At the APS March Meeting 2015, robotics researchers debated how we’ll achieve smart robots in real life — and what we’ll do with them when we get them.

There are robots that can vacuum floors, robots that beat world-class talent at chess and Jeopardy, and even robots that are capable of driving a car. These are examples of what Michigan State University computational biologist Chris Adami calls “special-purpose intelligence”: robots that do just one complicated thing well, but not much more. Case in point: You wouldn’t want a Roomba behind the wheel. Read the full piece at

CHRIS'S LATEST RESEARCH: Settling for ‘Mr. Right Now’ better than waiting for ‘Mr. Right’

Evolutionary researchers have determined that settling for “Mr. Okay” is a better evolutionary strategy than waiting for “Mr. Perfect.” 

When studying the evolution of risk aversion, Michigan State University researchers found that it is in our nature – traced back to the earliest humans – to take the safe bet when stakes are high, such as whether or not we will mate.

“Primitive humans were likely forced to bet on whether or not they could find a better mate,” said Chris Adami, MSU professor of microbiology and molecular genetics and co-author of the paper.

“They could either choose to mate with the first, potentially inferior, companion and risk inferior offspring, or they could wait for Mr. or Ms. Perfect to come around,” he said. “If they chose to wait, they risk never mating.” 

In the Works

From potential alien life to the basic cell structure of human beings, Chris's active research projects are changing the way we think about interdisciplinary science. Read more about his current research.

On Twitter

Chris Tweets at ChristophAdami about trying to understand how the universe works, including people and animals. And plants and microbes. So, pretty much everything.