BONUS LECTURE: Human-Robot Interactive Communication and Collaboration

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Human-Robot Interactive Communication and Collaboration
Tuesday, April 6, 2021 - 2:00pm to Wednesday, April 7, 2021 - 2:55pm
Zoom (Webinar)
Heni Ben Amor - Arizona State University
Abstract / Description: 

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Autonomous and anthropomorphic robots are poised to play a critical role in manufacturing, healthcare and even our homes in the near future. However, for this vision to become a reality, robots need to efficiently collaborate and physically interact with their human partners. Rather than traditional remote controls and programming languages, adaptive and transparent techniques and interfaces for human-robot collaboration are needed. In particular, robots may need to interpret implicit behavioral cues or explicit instructions and, in turn, generate appropriate responses. In this talk, I will present ongoing work which leverages machine learning (ML), natural language processing and virtual reality to create different modalities for humans and machines to engage in effortless and natural interactions. To this end, I will describe Bayesian Interaction Primitives - an approach for motor skill learning and spatio-temporal modelling in physical human-robot collaboration tasks. Further, I will discuss our recent work on language-conditioned imitation learning and self-supervised learning in interactive tasks. The talk will also cover techniques that enable robots to communicate information back to the human partner via mixed reality projections. To demonstrate these techniques, I will present applications in social robotics and collaborative assembly.


Heni Ben Amor is an Assistant Professor for robotics at Arizona State University. He is the director of the ASU Interactive Robotics Laboratory. Ben Amor received the NSF CAREER Award, the Fulton Outstanding Assistant Professor Award, as well as the Daimler-and-Benz Fellowship. Prior to joining ASU, he was a research scientist at Georgia Tech, a postdoctoral researcher at the Technical University Darmstadt (Germany), and a visiting research scientist in the Intelligent Robotics Lab at the University of Osaka (Japan). His primary research interests lie in the fields of artificial intelligence, machine learning, robotics, human-robot interaction and virtual reality. Ben Amor received a Ph.D. in computer science from the Technical University Freiberg, focusing on artificial intelligence and machine learning. More information can be found at: