This looks like a fun way to spend 3 years...

From: Patrick Wilken (
Date: Sat Aug 05 2000 - 12:19:18 MDT

[Non-member submission]

From: Roland Baddeley <>
Three year postdoctoral position funded by the BBSRC to work on the
computational analysis of visual signalling in cuttlefish, to work in
collaboration with Dr Daniel Osorio and Dr Roland Baddeley at Sussex

Cuttlefish have a remarkable ability to change their skin coloration
patterns giving them amazing camouflage abilities, and a very
effective visual communication channel. Previous work on cuttlefish
has relied on qualitative classification of their body patterns, but
by using digital video cameras, image warping techniques, and
statistical pattern analysis, it is now possible to quantitatively
analyze these changing skin patterns. Doing this we hope to understand
their role in camouflage and communication. We are therefore looking
for a postdoctoral researcher (for up to 3 years) who will:

1. Analyze the skin patterns generated by the cuttlefish. We have
developed warping and independent components analysis software. The
researcher would be expected implement additional means of analysis
that would shed light on the dimensionality, any clustering of the
patterns (expected), and implement methods to study the dynamics of
the change.

2. Conduct experiments on camouflage. The animals are kept in tanks
where ``textures'' can be inserted underneath. We can therefore
analyze camouflage by quantifying how the cuttlefish maps the texture
pattern inserted, onto its skin patterns. This will give unprecedented
insight into texture and form perception by a non-human animal. As
well as conducting the experiments, the researcher would be expected
to maintain the animals. No previous experience is required as
training will be provided.

3. Conduct experiments on communication. The cuttlefish communicate by
generating stereotypical patterns on the skin. As well as analyzing
these patterns on their own, given a quantitative description, the
relationship between the patterns of two communicating animals can be
analyzed (information capacity, relationship to behavior). Again the
researcher would be expected to collect data and analyze the results.
Applicants should have a strong background in statistical/neural
network techniques and an interest in applying them to real world
problems. The candidates will be experience in programming (MATLAB
preferred) and mathematical analysis.

Enquiries are welcome and can be made to Daniel Osorio
<> or Roland Baddeley <>
The salary will be on the standard BBSRC scale starting from 19,428
p.a. plus benefits.

Applicants for this position should submit C.V., relevant reprints,
and 3 letters of references. Letters of recommendation can be sent
electronically (plain text, word, or PDF) to
Applications can also be sent by mail to: Roland Baddeley, Laboratory
of Experimental Psychology, Sussex University, Falmer, Brighton
England BN1 8QG. Replies will only be made to people who get called
for interview. Closing date 30th October 2000.

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