RoboShow Highlights Artificial
Intelligence Research at UAlbany
Tuesday, May 10, 3-5 p.m.
event features robots dancing and discussing
Catherine Herman (518) 437-4980
ALBANY, N.Y. (May 6, 2005) -- The University
at Albany's Institute for Informatics,
Logics and Security Studies (ILS) will present
an exhibit of advanced, student-programmed
robots that obey verbal commands, talk to participants,
and play tic-tac-toe. RoboShow, a series of
research presentations and seminars on advanced
robotics, features demonstrations of Sony AIBO
robotic dogs programmed by UAlbany students
with artificial intelligence code, performing
such autonomous tasks as kicking a soccer goal,
synchronized dancing, and climbing over obstacles.
The demonstration grew from Computer Science
Professor Tomek Strzalkowski's Robotics Seminar. "Continuing the tradition we started last year, we're proud to
announce RoboShow 2005," he said. "This year, we have five projects
to demo, two more than last year. The students actually asked to work on projects
harder than I thought anyone could complete in the limited amount of time they
had. The long hours and hard work paid off -- they should be very proud of the
behaviors they created."
During the show, ILS research aide and show
organizer Robert Salkin will invite guests
to challenge the AIBO to a game of tic-tac-toe.
The AIBO will register information about its
opponent's position and respond accordingly.
According to Salkin, the robot intends to win. "I doubt anyone can beat our AIBO
-- even forcing a tie is hard to do!”
Another AIBO will "talk" and respond to spoken questions, such as "How's
the weather?" The AIBO, through a neural network vision system, will try
to identify letters held in front of it, and will also perform simple tasks assigned
by the speaker. The goal of the exercise is to demonstrate how robots might detect
human speech and synchronize their own "speech" in conjunction with
Other demonstrations include AIBOs playing
ball, avoiding obstacles, and performing dance
In addition to the robotic demonstrations,
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute's Professor
John T. Wen, of the electrical, computer, and
engineering systems department, will lecture
on "Distributed Control: from Robots to Networks."
"It's a cute little robotic dog manufactured by Sony as a toy --
it just so happens that it ended up being a much better research tool than a
toy," said Salkin. "The students aren't playing with the AIBOs - they
worked hard to get them to do all of those amazing things and the research has
applications in both industry and defense."
RoboShow will be held Tuesday, May 10, in
Social Sciences Building room 262 (ILS conference
room) on the uptown campus, and is free and
open to the public. RPI's John Wen will lecture
3-4 p.m. and robot demonstrations will be held
For more information, visit www.ils.albany.edu/robotics/roboshow2005/.