A few words about my work...
Here we are! This is a brief introduction on what is my work about. As you might have already guessed I'm up on something related to robotics. My research stems from an interdisciplinary approach ranging from "brain sciences" to actual robotics (or AI perhaps). I'm interested both on what biology could tell us about complex systems and what robotics could tell us about ourselves. I've addressed these issues in my Ph.D. thesis although in a simplified form. My long-term goal (project) is to build a complete alive artificial system (whatever this means) embedded in a real body, learning, growing (in some sense), feeling, perceiving and acting, naturally interacting with us. Wouldn't it be great? Along the way perhaps we might learn how we are made, we might get insights on our "physiology".
I focused on "sensorimotor development" as a model of learning and adaptation from the neural sciences and robotics perspective. Development provides unique insights on how sensorimotor coordination arises in biological systems and on the other hand, it could be the only feasible procedure to design highly complicated artificial systems. Of course because to convince the "audience" we have to show something after all, I built a "first prototype" of a "baby humanoid robot" named Babybot. I have shown how the twelve degrees of freedom "baby" acquires orienting and reaching behaviors autonomously.
In our crude artificial implementation we've shown that simple initial behaviors can be seen as the building blocks, guiding the learning of more sophisticate behaviors. At the same time, the simple behaviors can also serve to keep subsequent learning processes within feasible regions of the "space state". One key point of the whole procedure is complexity control. This concept borrowed from statistical learning theory tells us that the goal of a developing system might be seen as that of balancing the complexity of its internal learning structures to that of its experience thus allowing generalization.
This is of course work in progress.
"One day they'll be like us, undistinguishable, alive, feeling... isn't this a nice dream?"