Gas Laws, Flocking Behavior, and the Mosh Pit

This article has been making the rounds of social media (H/T Insta), but (while not pretending to fully understand the math) I found it cute and so bring it to your attention:  “Collective Motion of Moshers at Heavy Metal Concerts.”

Human collective behavior can vary from calm to panicked depending on social context … we study the highly energized collective motion of attendees at heavy metal concerts. We find these extreme social gatherings generate similarly extreme behaviors: a disordered gas-like state called a mosh pit and an ordered vortex-like state called a circle pit. Both phenomena are reproduced in flocking simulations demonstrating that human collective behavior is consistent with the predictions of simplified models.

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