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2017


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Robotic Motion Learning Framework to Promote Social Engagement

Burns, R.

The George Washington University, August 2017 (mastersthesis)

Abstract
This paper discusses a novel framework designed to increase human-robot interaction through robotic imitation of the user's gestures. The set up consists of a humanoid robotic agent that socializes with and play games with the user. For the experimental group, the robot also imitates one of the user's novel gestures during a play session. We hypothesize that the robot's use of imitation will increase the user's openness towards engaging with the robot. Preliminary results from a pilot study of 12 subjects are promising in that post-imitation, experimental subjects displayed a more positive emotional state, had higher instances of mood contagion towards the robot, and interpreted the robot to have a higher level of autonomy than their control group counterparts. These results point to an increased user interest in engagement fueled by personalized imitation during interaction.

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link (url) [BibTex]

2017


link (url) [BibTex]


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Human Shape Estimation using Statistical Body Models

Loper, M. M.

University of Tübingen, May 2017 (thesis)

Abstract
Human body estimation methods transform real-world observations into predictions about human body state. These estimation methods benefit a variety of health, entertainment, clothing, and ergonomics applications. State may include pose, overall body shape, and appearance. Body state estimation is underconstrained by observations; ambiguity presents itself both in the form of missing data within observations, and also in the form of unknown correspondences between observations. We address this challenge with the use of a statistical body model: a data-driven virtual human. This helps resolve ambiguity in two ways. First, it fills in missing data, meaning that incomplete observations still result in complete shape estimates. Second, the model provides a statistically-motivated penalty for unlikely states, which enables more plausible body shape estimates. Body state inference requires more than a body model; we therefore build obser- vation models whose output is compared with real observations. In this thesis, body state is estimated from three types of observations: 3D motion capture markers, depth and color images, and high-resolution 3D scans. In each case, a forward process is proposed which simulates observations. By comparing observations to the results of the forward process, state can be adjusted to minimize the difference between simulated and observed data. We use gradient-based methods because they are critical to the precise estimation of state with a large number of parameters. The contributions of this work include three parts. First, we propose a method for the estimation of body shape, nonrigid deformation, and pose from 3D markers. Second, we present a concise approach to differentiating through the rendering process, with application to body shape estimation. And finally, we present a statistical body model trained from human body scans, with state-of-the-art fidelity, good runtime performance, and compatibility with existing animation packages.

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Official Version [BibTex]


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Elements of Causal Inference - Foundations and Learning Algorithms

Peters, J., Janzing, D., Schölkopf, B.

Adaptive Computation and Machine Learning Series, The MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, USA, 2017 (book)

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PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Change-point Detection and Kernels Methods

Garreau, D.

Ecole Normale Supérieure / PSL Research University, 2017 (thesis)

link (url) [BibTex]

link (url) [BibTex]


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Learning Inference Models for Computer Vision

Jampani, V.

MPI for Intelligent Systems and University of Tübingen, 2017 (phdthesis)

Abstract
Computer vision can be understood as the ability to perform 'inference' on image data. Breakthroughs in computer vision technology are often marked by advances in inference techniques, as even the model design is often dictated by the complexity of inference in them. This thesis proposes learning based inference schemes and demonstrates applications in computer vision. We propose techniques for inference in both generative and discriminative computer vision models. Despite their intuitive appeal, the use of generative models in vision is hampered by the difficulty of posterior inference, which is often too complex or too slow to be practical. We propose techniques for improving inference in two widely used techniques: Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) sampling and message-passing inference. Our inference strategy is to learn separate discriminative models that assist Bayesian inference in a generative model. Experiments on a range of generative vision models show that the proposed techniques accelerate the inference process and/or converge to better solutions. A main complication in the design of discriminative models is the inclusion of prior knowledge in a principled way. For better inference in discriminative models, we propose techniques that modify the original model itself, as inference is simple evaluation of the model. We concentrate on convolutional neural network (CNN) models and propose a generalization of standard spatial convolutions, which are the basic building blocks of CNN architectures, to bilateral convolutions. First, we generalize the existing use of bilateral filters and then propose new neural network architectures with learnable bilateral filters, which we call `Bilateral Neural Networks'. We show how the bilateral filtering modules can be used for modifying existing CNN architectures for better image segmentation and propose a neural network approach for temporal information propagation in videos. Experiments demonstrate the potential of the proposed bilateral networks on a wide range of vision tasks and datasets. In summary, we propose learning based techniques for better inference in several computer vision models ranging from inverse graphics to freely parameterized neural networks. In generative vision models, our inference techniques alleviate some of the crucial hurdles in Bayesian posterior inference, paving new ways for the use of model based machine learning in vision. In discriminative CNN models, the proposed filter generalizations aid in the design of new neural network architectures that can handle sparse high-dimensional data as well as provide a way for incorporating prior knowledge into CNNs.

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pdf [BibTex]

pdf [BibTex]


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Mobile Microrobotics

Sitti, M.

Mobile Microrobotics, The MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, 2017 (book)

Abstract
Progress in micro- and nano-scale science and technology has created a demand for new microsystems for high-impact applications in healthcare, biotechnology, manufacturing, and mobile sensor networks. The new robotics field of microrobotics has emerged to extend our interactions and explorations to sub-millimeter scales. This is the first textbook on micron-scale mobile robotics, introducing the fundamentals of design, analysis, fabrication, and control, and drawing on case studies of existing approaches. The book covers the scaling laws that can be used to determine the dominant forces and effects at the micron scale; models forces acting on microrobots, including surface forces, friction, and viscous drag; and describes such possible microfabrication techniques as photo-lithography, bulk micromachining, and deep reactive ion etching. It presents on-board and remote sensing methods, noting that remote sensors are currently more feasible; studies possible on-board microactuators; discusses self-propulsion methods that use self-generated local gradients and fields or biological cells in liquid environments; and describes remote microrobot actuation methods for use in limited spaces such as inside the human body. It covers possible on-board powering methods, indispensable in future medical and other applications; locomotion methods for robots on surfaces, in liquids, in air, and on fluid-air interfaces; and the challenges of microrobot localization and control, in particular multi-robot control methods for magnetic microrobots. Finally, the book addresses current and future applications, including noninvasive medical diagnosis and treatment, environmental remediation, and scientific tools.

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Mobile Microrobotics By Metin Sitti - Chapter 1 (PDF) link (url) [BibTex]

Mobile Microrobotics By Metin Sitti - Chapter 1 (PDF) link (url) [BibTex]


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New Directions for Learning with Kernels and Gaussian Processes (Dagstuhl Seminar 16481)

Gretton, A., Hennig, P., Rasmussen, C., Schölkopf, B.

Dagstuhl Reports, 6(11):142-167, 2017 (book)

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DOI [BibTex]

DOI [BibTex]


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Development and Evaluation of a Portable BCI System for Remote Data Acquisition

Emde, T.

Graduate School of Neural Information Processing, Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen, Germany, 2017 (mastersthesis)

ei

[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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Brain-Computer Interfaces for patients with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

Fomina, T.

Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen, Germany, 2017 (phdthesis)

ei

[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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Design of a visualization scheme for functional connectivity data of Human Brain

Bramlage, L.

Hochschule Osnabrück - University of Applied Sciences, 2017 (thesis)

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Bramlage_BSc_2017.pdf [BibTex]


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Causal models for decision making via integrative inference

Geiger, P.

University of Stuttgart, Germany, 2017 (phdthesis)

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[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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Capturing Hand-Object Interaction and Reconstruction of Manipulated Objects

Tzionas, D.

University of Bonn, 2017 (phdthesis)

Abstract
Hand motion capture with an RGB-D sensor gained recently a lot of research attention, however, even most recent approaches focus on the case of a single isolated hand. We focus instead on hands that interact with other hands or with a rigid or articulated object. Our framework successfully captures motion in such scenarios by combining a generative model with discriminatively trained salient points, collision detection and physics simulation to achieve a low tracking error with physically plausible poses. All components are unified in a single objective function that can be optimized with standard optimization techniques. We initially assume a-priori knowledge of the object's shape and skeleton. In case of unknown object shape there are existing 3d reconstruction methods that capitalize on distinctive geometric or texture features. These methods though fail for textureless and highly symmetric objects like household articles, mechanical parts or toys. We show that extracting 3d hand motion for in-hand scanning effectively facilitates the reconstruction of such objects and we fuse the rich additional information of hands into a 3d reconstruction pipeline. Finally, although shape reconstruction is enough for rigid objects, there is a lack of tools that build rigged models of articulated objects that deform realistically using RGB-D data. We propose a method that creates a fully rigged model consisting of a watertight mesh, embedded skeleton and skinning weights by employing a combination of deformable mesh tracking, motion segmentation based on spectral clustering and skeletonization based on mean curvature flow.

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Thesis link (url) Project Page [BibTex]


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Evaluation of the passive dynamics of compliant legs with inertia

Györfi, B.

University of Applied Science Pforzheim, Germany, 2017 (mastersthesis)

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[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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Learning Optimal Configurations for Modeling Frowning by Transcranial Electrical Stimulation

Sücker, K.

Graduate School of Neural Information Processing, Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen, Germany, 2017 (mastersthesis)

ei

[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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Understanding FORC using synthetic micro-structured systems with variable coupling- and coercivefield distributions

Groß, Felix

Universität Stuttgart, Stuttgart, 2017 (mastersthesis)

mms

[BibTex]


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Adsorption von Wasserstoffmolekülen in nanoporösen Gerüststrukturen

Kotzur, Nadine

Universität Stuttgart, Stuttgart, 2017 (mastersthesis)

mms

[BibTex]

[BibTex]

2010


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Approximate Inference in Graphical Models

Hennig, P.

University of Cambridge, November 2010 (phdthesis)

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Web [BibTex]

2010


Web [BibTex]


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Bayesian Inference and Experimental Design for Large Generalised Linear Models

Nickisch, H.

Biologische Kybernetik, Technische Universität Berlin, Berlin, Germany, September 2010 (phdthesis)

ei

PDF Web [BibTex]

PDF Web [BibTex]


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Inferring High-Dimensional Causal Relations using Free Probability Theory

Zscheischler, J.

Humboldt Universität Berlin, Germany, August 2010 (diplomathesis)

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PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Predictive Representations For Sequential Decision Making Under Uncertainty

Boularias, A.

Université Laval, Quebec, Canada, July 2010 (phdthesis)

Abstract
The problem of making decisions is ubiquitous in life. This problem becomes even more complex when the decisions should be made sequentially. In fact, the execution of an action at a given time leads to a change in the environment of the problem, and this change cannot be predicted with certainty. The aim of a decision-making process is to optimally select actions in an uncertain environment. To this end, the environment is often modeled as a dynamical system with multiple states, and the actions are executed so that the system evolves toward a desirable state. In this thesis, we proposed a family of stochastic models and algorithms in order to improve the quality of of the decision-making process. The proposed models are alternative to Markov Decision Processes, a largely used framework for this type of problems. In particular, we showed that the state of a dynamical system can be represented more compactly if it is described in terms of predictions of certain future events. We also showed that even the cognitive process of selecting actions, known as policy, can be seen as a dynamical system. Starting from this observation, we proposed a panoply of algorithms, all based on predictive policy representations, in order to solve different problems of decision-making, such as decentralized planning, reinforcement learning, or imitation learning. We also analytically and empirically demonstrated that the proposed approaches lead to a decrease in the computational complexity and an increase in the quality of the decisions, compared to standard approaches for planning and learning under uncertainty.

ei

PDF [BibTex]


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Semi-supervised Subspace Learning and Application to Human Functional Magnetic Brain Resonance Imaging Data

Shelton, J.

Biologische Kybernetik, Eberhard Karls Universität, Tübingen, Germany, July 2010 (diplomathesis)

ei

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]


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Quantitative Evaluation of MR-based Attenuation Correction for Positron Emission Tomography (PET)

Mantlik, F.

Biologische Kybernetik, Universität Mannheim, Germany, March 2010 (diplomathesis)

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[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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From Motor Learning to Interaction Learning in Robots

Sigaud, O., Peters, J.

pages: 538, Studies in Computational Intelligence ; 264, (Editors: O Sigaud, J Peters), Springer, Berlin, Germany, January 2010 (book)

Abstract
From an engineering standpoint, the increasing complexity of robotic systems and the increasing demand for more autonomously learning robots, has become essential. This book is largely based on the successful workshop "From motor to interaction learning in robots" held at the IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robot Systems. The major aim of the book is to give students interested the topics described above a chance to get started faster and researchers a helpful compandium.

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Web DOI [BibTex]

Web DOI [BibTex]


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Finding Gene-Gene Interactions using Support Vector Machines

Rakitsch, B.

Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen, Germany, 2010 (diplomathesis)

ei

[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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Accurate Prediction of Protein-Coding Genes with Discriminative Learning Techniques

Schweikert, G.

Technische Universität Berlin, Germany, 2010 (phdthesis)

ei

[BibTex]


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Structural and Relational Data Mining for Systems Biology Applications

Georgii, E.

Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen, Germany , 2010 (phdthesis)

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Web [BibTex]

Web [BibTex]


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Population Coding in the Visual System: Statistical Methods and Theory

Macke, J.

Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen, Germany, 2010 (phdthesis)

ei

[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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Bayesian Methods for Neural Data Analysis

Gerwinn, S.

Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen, Germany, 2010 (phdthesis)

ei

Web [BibTex]

Web [BibTex]


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Clustering with Neighborhood Graphs

Maier, M.

Universität des Saarlandes, Saarbrücken, Germany, 2010 (phdthesis)

ei

Web [BibTex]

Web [BibTex]


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Detecting and modeling time shifts in microarray time series data applying Gaussian processes

Zwießele, M.

Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen, Germany, 2010 (thesis)

ei

[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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Detecting the mincut in sparse random graphs

Köhler, R.

Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen, Germany, 2010 (diplomathesis)

ei

[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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A wider view on encoding and decoding in the visual brain-computer interface speller system

Martens, S.

Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen, Germany, 2010 (phdthesis)

ei

[BibTex]


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Roombots: Design and Implementation of a Modular Robot for Reconfiguration and Locomotion

Spröwitz, A.

EPFL, Lausanne, Lausanne, 2010 (phdthesis)

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DOI [BibTex]


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Goal-Oriented Control of Self-Organizing Behavior in Autonomous Robots

Martius, G.

Georg-August-Universität Göttingen, 2010 (phdthesis)

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link (url) [BibTex]


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Statics and dynamics of simple fluids on chemically patterned substrates

Dörfler, F.

Universität Stuttgart, Stuttgart, Germany, 2010 (phdthesis)

mms

link (url) [BibTex]

link (url) [BibTex]


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Entnetzung verspannter Filme

Reindl, A.

Universität Stuttgart, Stuttgart, 2010 (mastersthesis)

mms

[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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Advanced ferromagnetic nanostructures

Goll, D.

Universität Stuttgart, Stuttgart, 2010 (phdthesis)

mms

[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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Wasserstoff in funktionellen Dünnschichtsystemen

Honert, J.

Universität Stuttgart, Stuttgart, 2010 (mastersthesis)

mms

[BibTex]

[BibTex]


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Handbook of Hydrogen Storage

Hirscher, M.

pages: 353 p., Wiley-VCH, Weinheim, 2010 (book)

mms

[BibTex]

[BibTex]

2006


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Extraction of visual features from natural video data using Slow Feature Analysis

Nickisch, H.

Biologische Kybernetik, Technische Universität Berlin, Berlin, Germany, September 2006 (diplomathesis)

Abstract
Das Forschungsprojekt NeuRoBot hat das un{\"u}berwachte Erlernen einer neuronal inspirierten Steuerungsarchitektur zum Ziel, und zwar unter den Randbedingungen biologischer Plausibilit{\"a}t und der Benutzung einer Kamera als einzigen Sensor. Visuelle Merkmale, die ein angemessenes Abbild der Umgebung liefern, sind unerl{\"a}sslich, um das Ziel kollisionsfreier Navigation zu erreichen. Zeitliche Koh{\"a}renz ist ein neues Lernprinzip, das in der Lage ist, Erkenntnisse aus der Biologie des Sehens zu reproduzieren. Es wird durch die Beobachtung motiviert, dass die “Sensoren” der Retina auf deutlich k{\"u}rzeren Zeitskalen variieren als eine abstrakte Beschreibung. Zeitliche Langsamkeitsanalyse l{\"o}st das Problem, indem sie zeitlich langsam ver{\"a}nderliche Signale aus schnell ver{\"a}nderlichen Eingabesignalen extrahiert. Eine Verallgemeinerung auf Signale, die nichtlinear von den Eingaben abh{\"a}ngen, ist durch die Anwendung des Kernel-Tricks m{\"o}glich. Das einzig benutzte Vorwissen ist die zeitliche Glattheit der gewonnenen Signale. In der vorliegenden Diplomarbeit wird Langsamkeitsanalyse auf Bildausschnitte von Videos einer Roboterkamera und einer Simulationsumgebung angewendet. Zuallererst werden mittels Parameterexploration und Kreuzvalidierung die langsamst m{\"o}glichen Funktionen bestimmt. Anschließend werden die Merkmalsfunktionen analysiert und einige Ansatzpunkte f{\"u}r ihre Interpretation angegeben. Aufgrund der sehr großen Datens{\"a}tze und der umfangreichen Berechnungen behandelt ein Großteil dieser Arbeit auch Aufwandsbetrachtungen und Fragen der effizienten Berechnung. Kantendetektoren in verschiedenen Phasen und mit haupts{\"a}chlich horizontaler Orientierung stellen die wichtigsten aus der Analyse hervorgehenden Funktionen dar. Eine Anwendung auf konkrete Navigationsaufgaben des Roboters konnte bisher nicht erreicht werden. Eine visuelle Interpretation der erlernten Merkmale ist jedoch durchaus gegeben.

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PDF [BibTex]

2006


PDF [BibTex]


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Semi-Supervised Learning

Chapelle, O., Schölkopf, B., Zien, A.

pages: 508, Adaptive computation and machine learning, MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, USA, September 2006 (book)

Abstract
In the field of machine learning, semi-supervised learning (SSL) occupies the middle ground, between supervised learning (in which all training examples are labeled) and unsupervised learning (in which no label data are given). Interest in SSL has increased in recent years, particularly because of application domains in which unlabeled data are plentiful, such as images, text, and bioinformatics. This first comprehensive overview of SSL presents state-of-the-art algorithms, a taxonomy of the field, selected applications, benchmark experiments, and perspectives on ongoing and future research. Semi-Supervised Learning first presents the key assumptions and ideas underlying the field: smoothness, cluster or low-density separation, manifold structure, and transduction. The core of the book is the presentation of SSL methods, organized according to algorithmic strategies. After an examination of generative models, the book describes algorithms that implement the low-density separation assumption, graph-based methods, and algorithms that perform two-step learning. The book then discusses SSL applications and offers guidelines for SSL practitioners by analyzing the results of extensive benchmark experiments. Finally, the book looks at interesting directions for SSL research. The book closes with a discussion of the relationship between semi-supervised learning and transduction.

ei

Web [BibTex]

Web [BibTex]


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An Online-Computation Approach to Optimal Finite-Horizon State-Feedback Control of Nonlinear Stochastic Systems

Deisenroth, MP.

Biologische Kybernetik, Universität Karlsruhe (TH), Karlsruhe, Germany, August 2006 (diplomathesis)

ei

PDF [BibTex]

PDF [BibTex]