Encyclopedia of Computational Neuroscience

Living Edition
| Editors: Dieter Jaeger, Ranu Jung

Human Balancing Tasks: Power Laws, Intermittency, and Lévy Flights

Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-7320-6_502-5



In human stick balance intermittency is observed (Fig. 1). Here intermittency denotes the random alternation between phases with extremely low movement amplitudes and phases with high movement amplitudes. This type of intermittency is characterized by power laws in the distributions of corrective movements in real stick balancing and in virtual stick balancing (i.e., balancing an unstable target on a computer screen). These observations are commonly seen as evidence which contrasts neurological control from standard engineered controllers.


Control Error Corrective Movement Balance Control Stability Domain Parametric Noise 
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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Laboratorio de Dinámica EstocásticaCentro de Física, Instituto Venezolano de Investigaciones CientíficasCaracasVenezuela
  2. 2.Institute for Theoretical PhysicsUniversity of BremenBremenGermany