INSIDE: Intelligent Networked Robot Systems for Symbiotic Interaction with Children with Impaired Development

Research teams: CMU; INESC ID; NOVA.ID.FCT; IST-ID
Organizations:  HGO; IDMIND; PLUX; Voice Interaction
Main Research Area: Human-robot Interaction; Symbiotic Interaction; Multiagent Planning; Therapeutical Application
CMU Portugal Program webpage: http://www.cmuportugal.org/tiercontent.aspx?id=5233
Principal Investigators: Francisco Melo (IST-UL; INESC-ID); Manuela Veloso (CMU; CS)

The INSIDE initiative explores symbiotic interactions between humans and robots in joint cooperative activities, and addresses the following key research problems:
– How can robots plan their course of action to coordinate with and accommodate for the actions of their human teammates? Is it possible to foresee, at planning time, the possibility of robots assisting humans in actions that the latter cannot perform as well as having the humans assist the robots in those actions that the robots cannot perform on their own?
– How can task, context and environment information, collected from a set of networked sensors (such as cameras and biometric sensors) be used to create more natural and engaging interactions between humans and robots involved in a joint cooperative activity in a physical environment?
INSIDE strives to develop new hardware and software solutions to support the aforementioned research, towards the final deployment of a real-world interaction scenario. The aim is to have children with impaired development interact with a networked robot system, in a joint cooperative task with therapeutical purposes. The proposed initiative involves the collaborative effort of the Computer Science Department at CMU and several Portuguese institutions (three research institutions and one hospital), as well as three Portuguese companies with extensive experience in the development of robot systems, human-computer speech interaction and compact biometric sensors.