• XPERO - Learning by Experimentation
The Client : Evropska komisija ( XPERO )
Project type: European projects
Project duration: 2006 - 2009
  • Description

The overall objective of the proposed project is to develop an embodied cognitive agent, which is able to conduct experiments in the real world with the purpose of gaining new insights about the world and the objects therein and to develop and improve its own cognitive skills and overall performance. It is obvious that for the ability to conduct experiments in the real world, embodiment is a fundamental prerequisite.Expected results of the project are basic models, techniques, and system solutions, enabling an embodied agent to autonomously design and conduct experiments in a given context - stimulating the agent's desire to gather new knowledge - and to extract new insights from the results of the experiment.XPERO proposes to approach this problem by developing a methodology for learning by experimentation. Enabling an embodied agent, in the sequel called robot, to design and conduct experiments in a natural real world setting and to extract new insights is more than just adding another feature to a technical system. The ability to conduct experiments in the real world and extract new knowledge and insights pushes open the door to a new quality of embodied systems namely to potentially unlimited autonomous learning. This ability enables the robot to grow in an unlimited fashion its cognitive capacity and its performance to accomplish meaningful tasks in the real world. Limitations are only set by the surrounding world and its own physical capabilities, and not by availability of a programmer, teacher or learning material. We plan to achieve this objective by performing research and development in the following areas Stimulation of Experiment, Design and Execution of Experiments, Observation and Evaluation of Experiments, Representing Knowledge and Gaining Insights, and Engineering the Experimental Loop.