They may behave like molecules in a gas or in solid material, schools of fish, or flocks of birds, all without thinking or direction, researchers have found. And sometimes, conditions that look chaotic are not.
While group behavior is more likely to be a topic in a conference of sociologists or psychologists, several groups of physicists at a meeting of the American Physical Society in Baltimore, reported using some techniques of physics to describe and maybe predict human behavior in times of crisis.
Take, for instance, a heavy metal concert, where crowds informally create mosh pits, mobs of people moving randomly to cacophonous and throbbing, rhythmic music, bouncing off each other, sometimes transporting each other over the mob by hand.
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