ICRA 2014 Workshop on general purpose robot vision

The integration of active vision and manipulation to support the processing of visual information and other sensing modalities is one of the prime interests of our laboratory. In this context we are organizing, in collaboration with Aleš Leonardis, University of Birmingham, Kostas Daniilidis, University of Pennsylvania, and Tamim Asfour, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, an ICRA 2014 workshop titled Active Visual Learning and Hierarchical Visual Representations for General-Purpose Robot Vision, to be held in Hong Kong on June 1st, 2014. All ICRA 2014 attendees interested in general-purpose robot vision are welcome to join us.

New paper in IEEE Transactions on Robotics

Paper titled “Coupling Movement Primitives: Interaction with the Environment and Bimanual Tasks”, co-authored by our members Andrej Gams, Bojan Nemec and Aleš Ude and our collaborator Auke Ijspeert from EPFL, Lausanne, has been accepted for publications in the prime robotics journal IEEE Transactions on Robotics. In the paper we investigated the framework of Dynamic Movement Primitives, which is in its original constrained to the kinematic aspect of the movement. In the paper we bridged the gap to dynamic behaviors by extending the framework with force/torque feedback. We proposed and evaluated a modulation approach that allows interaction with objects and people collaborating with the robot.

Our laboratory at IROS 2013 in Tokyo, Japan

Three of our papers will be presented in the main programme of IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS), to be held in Tokyo Big Sight, Japan, from November 3 - 7, 2013. The first authors of these papers are Andrej Gams (Modulation of Motor Primitives Using Force Feedback: Interaction with the Environment and Bimanual Tasks), Barry Ridge (Action-Grounded Push Affordance Bootstrapping of Unknown Objects), and our collaborator Mohamad J. Aein from University of Göttingen (Toward a Library of Manipulation Actions Based on Semantic Object-Action Relations). See our publications site for more details and paper download.

Presentations at Humanoids 2013 in Atlanta, USA

humanoids logo
Three of our papers have been accepted for presentation at IEEE-RAS International Conference on Humanoid Robots (Humanoids), to be held in Atlanta, Georgia, from October 15 - 17, 2013, and will be presented in the main programme of the conference. The first authors of these papers are Bojan Nemec (Velocity Adaptation for Self-Improvement of Skills Learned from User Demonstrations), Miha Deniša (Synthesizing Compliant Reaching Movements by Searching a Database of Example Trajectories), and Robert Bevec (Object Learning through Interactive Manipulation and Foveated Vision). See our publication webpage for more details and paper download.

Xperience project summer school

The European Project Xperience is organizing a summer school for international students in the field of cognitive robotics on the island of Mallorca, Spain, from October 2nd - 5th, 2013. The school will bring together scholars from robotics and cognitive science in a program, which will allow the interested student to learn about the cross-links between these fields and discuss topics with leading scientists.

The Xperience Project addresses the problem of generative knowledge construction in robotics to rapidly create new concepts and react to unanticipated situations using experience. This problem is addressed by structural bootstrapping, an idea taken from language acquisition research: knowledge about grammar allows a child to infer the meaning of an unknown word from its grammatical role together with understood remainder of the sentence. Structural bootstrapping generalizes this idea for general cognitive learning: if you know the structure of a process, the role of unknown actions and entities can be inferred from their location and use in the process. This approach enables rapid generalization and allow agents to communicate effectively.

The school is mainly intended for PhD students and young postdocs. Participants will present their work in an interactive poster session on October 4th. Selected student papers will be presented orally.

Topics covered:
Perception & action, learning, cognitive vision, developmental robotics, humanoid robotics, developmental and cognitive psychology, language acquisition, and some more (see list of speakers).

Confirmed speakers:
  • Aleš Leonardis (University of Birmingham)
  • Angelo Cangelosi (University of Plymouth)
  • Antonis Argyros (Institute of Computer Science, FORTH)
  • Bernhard Hommel (Leiden University)
  • Bruno Siciliano (Università degli Studi di Napoli Federico II)
  • David Vernon (University of Skövde)
  • Fiora Pirri (Sapienza University of Rome)
  • Frank Guerin (University of Aberdeen)
  • Gordon Cheng (Technische Universität Munich)
  • Helge Ritter (University of Bielefeld)
  • Jan Peters (Technische Universität Darmstadt)
  • Katerina Pastra (CSRI, Athen)
  • Kerstin Fischer (SudDansk University Odense)
  • Lourdes Agapito (Queen Mary University of London)
  • Mark Lee (Aberystwyth University)
  • Tom Henderson (University of Utah)
  • Yiannis Demiris (Imperial College London)

Apply for participation:
Places at the summer school are limited. Those who would like to participate should submit an application by July 1st, 2013, to summerschool@xperience.org. Your application should be submitted as a single pdf file and should contain
  1. your CV,
  2. half page statement of motivation and
  3. up to four page extended abstract of intended presentation.
Your application will be acknowledged within two business days, and notification of acceptance will be made on July 15th, 2013. The best not-accepted applications will be put on a waiting-list and additional students might be accepted 2 weeks later.

The summer school will take place on the island of Mallorca in Spain from October 2nd - 5th, 2013.
Venue: Hotel Castell de Mar, Cala Millor.

The Xperience team:
  • Rüdiger Dillmann (Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, coordinator)
  • Mark Steedman (University of Edinburgh)
  • Chris Geib (University of Edinburgh)
  • Norbert Krüger (University of Southern Denmark, Odense)
  • Aleš Ude (Jožef Stefan Institute, Ljubljana)
  • Justus Piater (University of Innsbruck)
  • Giorgio Metta (Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Genova)
  • Guilio Sandini (Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Genova)
  • Tamim Asfour (Karlsruhe Institute of Technology)
  • Florentin Wörgötter (Georg-August University Göttingen)