Sunday, 30 October 2011

And back to vampires again...

By the way, (as we have already mentioned) we are not the only scientists dealing with the vampirical theme. Quite often, other colleagues turn to this topic in their own research under the influence of popular films (they are so irresistible, we all know that) and literature – after all, it is hard to refrain from using your analytical mind in solving the puzzles of the supernatural.

Academic research on vampires was also done by the two mathematicians from Technische Universitat Wien in Vienna, Austria. Richard Hartl and Alexander Mehlmann published several papers explaining, among all, the problem of renewable resources (us humans!), optimal blood consumption and cyclical bloodsucking behavior for vampires. In the 1992 paper published in the Journal of Optimization Theory and Application, the authors present a theoretical model explaining what they call “cycles of fear”. Their model provides an alternative approach to traditional demographic oscillations associated with studying interactions between vampires and humans (they use a controlled Lotka-Volterra type of system and introduce an optimal choice of consumption).
Although quite mathematical and full of formulas that might be too challenging for mainstream vampire-lovers, the paper does not lack a certain sense of humor (for example they state that the use of optimal point control theory (the one that applies Pontryagin’s principle requiring the derivation of a shadow price for vampires) is questionable because vampires cast no shadow).

Whether explained through mathematics or not, most academic papers on vampires do not deny the existence of vampires as such. It is just all about optimal strategies and behavior for vampires who need to take care and do not expose themselves too much to humans.
Later, we are going to show that our research also provides grounds for the existence of vampires among us. And, quite interestingly, some writers and film-makers know a great deal about it and describe the vampiric behavior and optimal strategies with stunning precision. Do they know some vampires? Is this why they can tell us about them so much?

Read our blog and find out more about supernatural economics. Happy Halloween! :)