Seminars & Colloquia

Pieter Abbeel

CS Department, Berkeley

"Making Robots Learn"

Monday February 22, 2016 04:00 PM
Location: 3211, EBII NCSU Centennial Campus
(Visitor parking instructions)

This talk is part of the Triangle Computer Science Distinguished Lecturer Series



Programming robots remains notoriously difficult.  Equipping robots with the ability to learn would by-pass the need for what often ends up being time-consuming task specific programming.  In this talk I will describe the ideas behind two promising types of robot learning: First I will discuss apprenticeship learning, in which robots learn from human demonstrations, and which has enabled autonomous helicopter aerobatics, knot tying, basic suturing, and cloth manipulation.   Then I will discuss deep reinforcement learning, in which robots learn through their own trial and error, and which has enabled learning locomotion as well as a range of assembly and manipulation tasks.

Short Bio:

Pieter Abbeel (Associate Professor, UC Berkeley EECS) works in machine learning and robotics, in particular his research is on making robots learn from people (apprenticeship learning) and how to make robots learn through their own trial and error (reinforcement learning).  His robots have learned: advanced helicopter aerobatics, knot-tying, basic assembly, and organizing laundry.  He has won various awards, including best paper awards at ICML and ICRA, the Sloan Fellowship, the Air Force Office of Scientific Research Young Investigator Program (AFOSR-YIP) award, the Office of Naval Research Young Investigator Program (ONR-YIP) award, the DARPA Young Faculty Award (DARPA-YFA), the National Science Foundation Faculty Early Career Development Program Award (NSF-CAREER), the MIT TR35, the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society (RAS) Early Career Award, and the Dick Volz Best U.S. Ph.D. Thesis in Robotics and Automation Award.

Host: George Konidaris, Duke

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