I am a co-organizer of the IROS 2014 Full-day Workshop "The future of multiple-robot research and its multiple identities", an event of the 2014 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems, Chicago, IL, USA.
More information at the workshop website.
September 18th, Chigago, IL, USA
Time: 8.30am - 5.00pm
The objective of this workshop is to assess the degree to which multi-robot systems is a distinct research sub-area within the robotics community rather than a topic that cuts-across each of the other sub-areas and topics. We wish to explore the degree to which core elements of multi-robot systems research (e.g., distributed algorithms, decentralized planning, etc.) span existing areas and to anticipate the degree to which these elements will in the future. This workshop aims at promoting a discussion to identify and define the overarching ideas that can tie together different research direction in multi-robot systems, and lead to the definition of common practices and standards.
A constantly increasing community of researchers has been putting great effort in the development of multi-robot systems, in the last decades.
The interest in multi-robot systems is motivated by the fact that, when dealing with complex tasks, it is often preferable to exploit the potentialities of a team of cooperating robots, instead of developing a super-capable individual robot. In fact, it is often more practical (from a technological and economical point of view) to bring together a group of simple robots (possibly with different capabilities), and make them cooperate. Moreover, due to redundancy, multi-robot systems are inherently more reliable, which makes them even more attractive.
Researchers interested in multi-robot systems represent an inherently diverse community, since several competences are needed in this field, ranging from control systems to mechanical design, estimation, perception, planning, and interaction, just to list a few. While this fact could represent an incredible richness for the multi-robot field, perhaps instead it hinders the internal dialogue among researchers coming from different backgrounds and thus represents an obstacle to constitution and development of a united field of research like other fields in robotics.
The main objective of this workshop is therefore to investigate if research in “multi-robot systems” ought to be considered as an autonomous research field, characterized by common methodologies and practices, or if it should be better considered only as a meta-field, i.e., a “tag” used to label the many works in different research fields when dealing with system possessing an increased number of degrees of freedom and/or several sub-systems. We believe that finding an answer to this question is fundamental for the future development of multi-robot system research.
Toward this aim we will host a selection of invited keynote speakers that cover many different spirits of multi-robot community. We will ask them to give a historical perspective on their multi-robot system research, a current state-of-the-art, and insights on future trends and research challenges. The workshop will be organized in multiple sessions, each of which will be focused on a fundamental problem or aspect of multi-robot systems (e.g., control, communication, modeling, etc.).
In this way we intend to reveal the true nature of multi-robot systems research and to pave the way for the creation of new stronger links among the different spirits of this large robotics community.
An interactive session will also be organized, in order to increase the number and the variety of the participants in the discussion, based on an open Call for Contributions.
The workshop will conclude with an open discussion among the participants, based on the main concepts drawn from the presentations.
- Rachid Alami
- Magnus Egerstedt
Georgia Institute of Technology, USA
- Randy Freeman
Northwestern University, USA
- Vijay Kumar
University of Pennsylvania, USA
- Jonathan P. How
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA
- Ani Hsieh
Drexel University, USA
- Volkan Isler
University of Minnesota, USA
- Anibal Ollero
University of Seville, Spain
- Lynne Parker
University of Tennessee, USA
- Mac Schwager
Boston University, USA
- Kosuke Sekiyama
Nagoya University, Japan
Do you have a Twitter account?
Use the hashtag #multirobots to send comments during (and before!) the workshop, to contribute to the final discussion.
Department of Sciences and Methods for Engineering (DISMI)
University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Italy