Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Ground-breaking research to develop ‘conscious’ robot

22.08.2003


Researchers at the Universities of Essex and Bristol will soon be launching a ground-breaking project to develop a ‘conscious’ robot.



The aim of the project, which involves computer scientists and neuropsychologists, is to advance the technology of intelligent machines, while also extending the understanding of human consciousness.

Owen Holland, Senior Lecturer in Computer Science, who will lead the three-year project at Essex, explained: ‘Consciousness is perhaps the last remaining mystery in understanding what it is to be human. By attempting to build physical systems which can produce a form of artificial consciousness, we hope to learn more about the nature of consciousness.’


The project has won funding worth £493,290 from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council’s (EPSRC) Adventure Fund, an initiative launched to support highly adventurous and risky research that challenges current conventions and explores new boundaries. Only 13 projects from almost 700 applications were successful in obtaining funding.

The robot at the heart of the project will be designed and built at the University of Essex, home to one of the UK’s largest mobile robotics groups. It will operate in a state of the art robotics research laboratory scheduled for completion next year as part of a new £6.3 million building to be shared between the Computer Science and Electronic Systems Engineering departments.

At the University of Bristol Psychology Department, Professor Tom Troscianko, an expert in the neuropsychology of primate vision, will lead a team developing the parts of the robot’s ‘brain’ that will deal with vision. Much of what we know about consciousness comes from studies of visual experience and visual imagination, and so it is important for the artificial systems to match the systems of humans and apes as closely as possible.

The aim is to put the robots in a complex environment where they will have to imagine themselves trying out various actions before choosing the best one. Powerful computer systems will analyse and display what is going on the robot’s ‘brain’, enabling the scientists to search for signs of consciousness.

Owen Holland explained: ‘Like all the projects in the Adventure Fund, there is quite a high risk of failure. However, whether we succeed in detecting consciousness or not, this project will certainly allow us to learn more about the operation of complex human-like visual systems, and will enable ourselves and others to build robots with better-developed artificial intelligence in the future.

Kate Cleveland | alfa
Further information:
http://www.essex.ac.uk/news

More articles from Information Technology:

nachricht Equipping form with function
23.06.2017 | Institute of Science and Technology Austria

nachricht Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity
23.06.2017 | Forschungsverbund Berlin e.V.

All articles from Information Technology >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

Im Focus: Scientists develop molecular thermometer for contactless measurement using infrared light

Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine

Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Quantum thermometer or optical refrigerator?

23.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

A 100-year-old physics problem has been solved at EPFL

23.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Equipping form with function

23.06.2017 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>