MIN Faculty
Department of Informatics
Knowledge Technology

News and Media

March 30, 2017, Student project group prepares for final presentation with NICO robot

The student team of the Human-Robot-Interaction project prepares for the final presentation together with the NICO robot. Be invited to join the presentation and watch the NICO performing in a HRI-Experiment on the 30th March 2017 at 2pm in room D-220.

February 22, 2017, Knowledge Technology presents neural networks running on Nao robots at the "Unitag"

The Knowledge Technology group presented some of the group's work to motivate secondary school students to start studying computer science at the University of Hamburg. This time we showed how good humans are in sound source localisation (see the picture) compared to robots and that robots already get close, but could not outperform them. The robots will continue to train, so maybe next year.....

February 16, 2017, Knowledge Technology and the Hamburg Bit-Bots receive a TITAN X

We are grateful to receive a GeForce TITAN X Pascal GPU by the NVIDIA Corporation. The donation is meant to foster the research into convolutional deep learning neural networks and their use for visual processing in the context of soccer robots. This will strengthen the Hamburg Bit-Bots in future RoboCup Soccer contests. Competitors beware! :-)

December 23, 2016, The Knowledge Technology Group Wishes a Happy Christmas

With best wishes for a Happy Christmas, Season greetings and a Successful New Year.

December 16, 2016, Robot Workshop of the SECURE Project at Fraunhofer IPA in Stuttgart

The three SECURE fellows of the Knowledge Technology Group have been to the 3rd SECURE Project Workshop at Fraunhofer IPA in Stuttgart from December 14-16 2016. The three days offered a comprehensive programme on robot programming, usage, and security with hands-on workshops organised by Fraunhofer IPA and the SECURE partners IIT (Italy), KUKA (Germany), and Softbank Robotics Europe (France). The robots Pepper, Care-O-bot 4, Rob@Work, and the KUKA iiwa arm were waiting for the fellows and thus providing a wide range of different experiences and use cases.

November 15, 2016, Visit from the Fundus Theatre in Hamburg

The Knowledge Technology group was visited by the Fundus Theatre. The Fundus Theatre is a theatre in Hamburg which specialises in performances for children. The theatre presents a program called "Forschungstheater" (research theatre), in which very young researchers (from 3 years on) meet researchers from universities. At Knowledge Technolgy a group of children explored our Nao and NICO robots and how to work with these robots with bioinspired approaches.

November 11, 2016, Knowledge Technology Student Won Merit Studentship

IAS student Nikhil Churamani has been awarded a merit scholarship from the Universität Hamburg. Merit scholarships are intended for outstanding international students from all degree programs who are pursuing an academic degree at the Universität Hamburg. Scholarships are awarded by a committee comprised of teachers, students, and members of the University administration. Nikhil is working on deep neural networks for teaching emotion recognition and expression synthesis.

September 28, 2016, PhD Thesis Defense of Pablo Barros

PhD student Pablo Barros defended his PhD thesis "Modelling Affection Mechanisms using Deep and Self-Organizing Neural Networks" successfully. Pablo was a former PhD student working within the context of the Gestures and Reference Instructions for Deep robot learning (GRID) project.

July 4, 2016, Knowledge Technology Paper Wins "Best Paper Award" at the 20th Robocup International Symposium

The paper "Speck, D., Barros, P., Weber, C. and Wermter, S. Ball Localization for Robocup Soccer using Convolutional Neural Networks" won the "Best Paper Award for Engineering Contribution" at the 20th Robocup International Symposium. In the RoboCup competition, the football league for robots, the localization of the ball has become harder since 2016, as the ball is not unicoloured anymore, but has a pattern like the balls we know from human football. The paper presents an approach using Convolutional Neural Networks (CNN) to locate the new ball. The comittee members highlighted that the approach does not need any preprocessing and that this really emphasizes the idea of neural networks for localization tasks in robotics.

June 22, 2016, PhD Thesis Defense of Stefan Heinrich

PhD student Stefan Heinrich defended his PhD thesis "Natural language acquisition in recurrent neural architectures" successfully. Stefan was a former PhD student working within the context of the Neuro-inspired Human-Robot Interaction project.

May 23, 2016, Knowledge Technology receives funding for a EU Marie Skłodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network (ITN)

The PhD training programme "SOCRATES" (SOcial Cognitive Robotic Agents in The European Society) focuses on increasing interaction quality of service robots in the caregiving domain. Intelligent service robots that care for the elderly have to understand not only the spoken word, but also recognise other kinds of human communication, like gestures and emotions. The goal of SOCRATES is to use these additional communication channels to improve the quality of interaction between robots and elderly people.

May 3, 2015, PhD Thesis Defense of Nicolás Ignacio Navarro Guerrero

PhD student Nicolás Ignacio Navarro Guerrero defended his PhD thesis "Neurocomputational Mechanisms for Adaptive Self-Preservative Robot Behaviour" successfully. Nicolás was a former PhD student contributing to the RobotDoc project.

May 2th, 2016, Talk by Prof. Lowe on Lecture2Go

Prof. Lowe from the University of Skövde and the University of Gothenburg delivered a lecture on "Embodied Affective Decision Making in Robots" at the "Informatik Kolloquium". The lecture is available on Lecture2Go. During his visit to Hamburg Prof. Lowe visited also the Knowledge Technology labs.

February 23, 2016, Knowledge Technology presents bioinspired algorithms on two Nao robots at Unitag

At the "Unitag" the University of Hamburg presents an overview of the different available courses of studies to seconardary school students. Knowledge Technology participated in this by giving a talk and a demo presenting neural algorithms running on two Nao robots. The robots performed very well and received warm feedback from the audience.

November 20, 2015, DFG authorizes new collaborative research center involving Knowledge Technology group

The German Research Association (DFG) has authorized the new collaborative research center "Cross-modal Learning: Adaptivity, Prediction and Interaction" (TRR 169) involving the Knowledge Technology group. The goal of the research project is research for neurocognitive and computational principles of crossmodal interaction between different senses, like vision, audition and tactile sensings. These principles will be designed and implemented for cognitive robot systems. The research program is now funded for the first four years, planned for 12 years and is an international cooperation with institutions in Hamburg and Beijing. For further details see Press Release (in German).
"Press Release"

November 7, 2015, "Nacht des Wissens" (Night of Science)

At the 6th "Nacht des Wissens" (Night of Science) over 50 Universities and Institutes showed their research to the public with over 1000 events. The Knowledge Technology group participated with a booth showing a language-learning robot, a demo based on the research of the projects EchoRob, CoRob and DOCKS.

October 29, 2015, PhD Thesis Defense of Johannes Bauer

PhD student Johannes Bauer defended his PhD thesis "One Computer Scientist's (Deep) Superior Colliculus : Modeling, understanding, and learning from a multisensory midbrain structure" successfully. Johannes was a former PhD student of the Cinacs project.

September 29, 2015, Knowledge Technology presents novel research at University of Hamburg booth at IROS 2015

For the three days of the IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS 2015) the Knowlegde Technology group presented, as one of two research groups from the University of Hamburg, some of their projects in research and teaching. We thank all the visitors for the interesting questions and discussions at the booth. The next IROS will be held in Daejeon, Korea in October 2016.

September 1, 2015, Safer Service Robots: International Research Project Launched

Robots are no longer used only in industrial environments, but also increasingly in the home – such as a service robot for supporting elderly or persons in need of care. The requirements for these service robots are very high, especially concerning their learning and communication skills. The Europan research project “Safety Enables Cooperation in Uncertain Robotic Environments” (SECURE), under the coordination of Prof. Dr. Stefan Wermter and the Know­ledge Tech­no­lo­gy Group, will now examine how the safety of learning and communicating service robots can be increased in domestic environments. In this Innovative Training Network (ITN) at least 12 PhD students will be trained as early-stage researchers based on the collaboration of 11 European partners sites. For more details see the SECURE Home Page .

May 20th, 2015, Study Visit by Students from the Universidad Cartagena, Columbia

For three days, fifteen DAAD-sponsored students visited the MIN-Faculty of the University of Hamburg. The programme included visits at the Physics and the Computer Science department. At the Knowledge Technology group, the group got introduced to current research projects which lead to interesting discussions between researchers and students. The guests were impressed by the research and showed much interest for the International Masters's programme in Intelligent Adaptive Systems.

April 23th, 2015, Knowledge Technology at the GirlsDay

The Knowledge Technology group showed results from the Ambient Living Lab where humans can communicate with helpful robots on the Girls Day 2015. This event tries to showcase interesting research to girls. The Knowledge Technology group contributes to the Girls Day since 2012.

April 20th, 2015, Brazilian TV at the Knowlegde Technology lab

A team of the Brazilian TV show "Rota da Inovação" visited the Knowledge Technology lab to interview researchers and watch and record some of their work. "Rota da Inovação" reports about innovative research groups and institutions from all over the world.

April 17th, 2015, PhD Thesis Defense of Joni Junpei Zhong

PhD student Joni Junpei Zhong defended his PhD thesis "Artificial Neural Models for Feedback Pathways for Sensorimotor Integration" successfully. Joni was a former PhD student of the RobotDoc project.

April 16th, 2015, Talk from Prof. Cangelosi on Lecture2Go

Prof. Cangelosi from the University of Plymouth delivered a lecture about "Developmental Robots" at the "Informatik Kolloquium". The lecture is available on Lecture2Go. Prof. Cangelosi visited as well the Knowledge Technology labs on his visit to Hamburg.

February 25th, 2015, Unitag

Sven Magg from the Knowledge Technology group gave a talk "Von neuronalen Algorithmen im Gehirn zu helfenden, lernenden Robotern" (From Neural Algorythms in the Brain to Learning and Helping Robots) at the "Unitag". At the Unitag pupils from higher grades in school learn about different courses of studies.

January 15th, 2015, Knowledge Technology in the ZEIT newspaper

The German newspaper "DIE ZEIT", one of the most relevant weekly newspapers in Germany, contained a University of Hamburg special page including an article about the Knowledge Technology group. The article describes some of Knowledge Technologys recent projects and gives a brief overview about the overall concepts. Find the special page here (German only).

October, 2014, Knowledge Technology group student won the "Expo 2014" at the University of Hamburg

Three students and one student group from the Knowledge Technology group participated in the "Expo 2014" at the Informatics department of the University of Hamburg. At this event students can show their work and participate in a competition for the best work of the year. Johannes Twiefel from the Knowledge Technology Group, co-supervised by the Natural Language Systems Division, won the first prize for his work about improving Google's speech recognition with phonetic matching. Congratulations Johannes!

October, 2014, ICANN 2014 talks now avaiable on lecture to go

For those who did not join the ICANN 2014 in Hamburg, missed a talk or want to see it again, the Knowledge Technology presents all invited speakers' talks now on the lecture to go site of the University of Hamburg. Find it here.

September 15-19, 2014, ICANN 2014 in Hamburg

The Knowledge Technology group organizes the 24th International Conference on Artificial Neural Networks (ICANN 2014), taking place 15-19 September at the University of Hamburg, Germany. The International Conference on Artificial Neural Networks is the annual flagship conference of the European Neural Network Society (ENNS). ICANN 2014 will feature main tracks Brain Inspired Computing and Machine Learning research, with strong cross-disciplinary interactions and applications. All research fields dealing with Neural Networks will be present at the Conference.

July 31, 2014, AAAI Video Competition, Award-winning Robot CoCoCo

The student group of the last Knowledge Technology´s master project in Human-Robot Interaction produced a video about our developed robot CoCoCo for the famous AAAI Video Competition held in Quebec, Canada. The video was accepted and even got a nomination in the category for the "Best Robot Video". The video tells the story of a well known clean-up problem and how to solve it with a robot. The certificate won with the development of CoCoCo can be found here . AAAI presents our video here .

June 17-18, 2014, eHealth Conference 2014 in Hamburg

The Knowledge Technology group presents a fall detection system on the eHealth Conference 2014 in Hamburg. The hardware contains a Nao robot and a depth sensor using a SOM-based algorithm to detect novel behaviour of humans, like falling. Details about the system can be found on the conference poster and in an article from our student Oliver Degener, published in the documentation of the conference.

May 15, 2014, Mayor of the City of Hamburg visited our Campus

Olaf Scholz, Mayor of the City of Hamburg, visited the Informatik Campus with the Chancellor of the University of Hamburg, Dr. Martin Hecht, and the Dean of the Faculty, Prof. Dr. Heinrich Graener. The Knowledge Technology group showed the visitors a Nao robot controlled by a Neural Network and a depth-sensor working as as Cognitive Robot Assistent.

April 30, 2014, Knowledge Technology group student won BWF scholarship

Sathyanarayanan Kuppusami, a student from the Knowledge technology group won a scholarship from the Authority for Science and Research of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg (Behörde für Wissenschaft und Forschung der Freien und Hansestadt Hamburg (BWF)). Sathyanarayanan Kuppusami studies for a Master of Science in Intelligent Adaptive Systems, hosted at the Knowledge Technology group.

October 17, 2013, Knowledge Technology group student won the "Expo 2013" at the University of Hamburg

Two students and one student group from the Knowledge Technology group participated in the "Expo 2013" at the Informatics department of the University of Hamburg. On this event students can show their work and participate in a competition for the best work of the year. Dennis Hamester from Knowledge Technology won the first prize for his work about hand pose estimation with a depth Sensor. Congratulations Dennis!

October 08-09, 2013, Knowledge Technology group participated in the "Schnupperstudium" at the University of Hamburg

The Knowledge Technology participated in the Schnupperstudium 2013 at the University of Hamburg. At the "Schnupperstudium" interested pupils can get information about studying computer science. The Knowledge Technology group presented some of the recent research work.

August 12, 2013, Knowledge Technology Youtube Channel

The Knowledge Technology group opened a youtube channel to present some of the groups videos for a wider public. The published videos contain lab (like in the right example) and robot demonstrations. The channel can be reached here.

June 27-30, 2013, RoboCup 2013 (RoboCup 2013)

Knowledge Technology group robot "Wilma" will participate for the Hamburg Bit-Bots in the 2013 RoboCup Championchip in Eindhoven. Wilma recently helped the Bit-Bots by scoring an important goal in the semi-final of the RoboCup German Open. And good luck Wilma!

December 11, 2012, 4pm - 6:30pm: Workshop on ICT and Robotics for Care and Service

The workshop presented results of the KSERA project for discussion and looked into future directions. Furthermore, representatives from related industries presented. KSERA's strong points are specific mobile robot applications and extensions, a human-centred approach, integration with smart home and experimental evaluation with elderly users. Venue: Konrad Zuse lecture hall, Informatics campus, Hamburg University. Find the program here.
Presentations: Raymond Cuijpers (pdf), Hadas Lewy (pdf), Mikhail Simonov (mp4), Oriol Torres (mp4), Rüdiger Höfert (mp4), Rudolphe Gelin (mp4), discussion (mp4).

Knowledge Technology group will co-organise the"Postgraduate Conference on Robotics and Development of Cognition" on 10 ‐12 Sep, 2012 in Lausanne, Switzerland

As a part of the Marie-Curie Actions ITN RobotDoC, the Postgraduate Conference on Robotics and Development of Cognition (RobotDoc-PhD) will be co-organised by WTM. The aim of this conference is to bring together young scientists working on developmental cognitive robotics and its core disciplines. It will be held as a satellite event of the 22nd International Conference on Artificial Neural Networks (ICANN 2012). Find further details here .

Knowledge Technology group will host the international workshop "Learning Multimodal Agents" on September 7th 2012

The international graduate research group CINACS, in conjunction with WTM group, will hold the international workshop "Learning Multimodal Agents" on September 7th 2012. The workshop is focused on multimodal integration in artificial cognitive systems. Find further details and the call for papers here .

April 4th, 2012: TV Report about KSERA Project

RTL-Nord, a german broadcaster, reported about the KSERA projekt. Find the video here .

March 31th, 2012: Newspaper "Hamburger Abendblatt" reports about WTM research

The Hamburger Abendblatt, a german newspaper, reported about the KSERA project and the reactions of elder people on the Nao Robot. Find the pdf version of the article here .

March 3th, 2012: Newspaper "Hamburger Abendblatt" reports about Knowledge Technology group researcher Nils Meins and his work

A local part of the Hamburger Abendblatt reported about the work of Nils Meins with the Nao robots for the KSERA project and the Knowledge Technology group. Find the pdf version of the article here .