Petar Kormushev

Describe yourself: Who you are and what you're doing?
I am a senior postdoctoral researcher at the Advanced Robotics dept. of the Italian Institute of Technology. I do research in robotics and machine learning. I specialize in Reinforcement Learning algorithms for intelligent robot behavior.

How did your interest in robots / robotics start?
I come from a Computer Science background, so I was very much interested in Artificial Intelligence. The problem with AI is the so-called "grounding": an AI agent cannot be truly intelligent about everyday concepts, unless it can physically experience things in the real world. This is what robots provide to AI: a physical body to give grounding to the AI of the future.


What kind of actions needs to be done in the community to increase the interest and the awareness of robots / robotics?
First, educational robots should be made more affordable. Second, schools and universities should offer more courses in computer programming and robotics.

If you have any closing remarks or comments about robots / robotics, then go ahead.
Now it's a very exciting time to be involved with robotics. Progress is made every day, the critical mass of theory and prototypes has accumulated, so all experts expect an exponential growth in the field in the next 20-30 years.


[source: Vive Les Robots!]

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Petar Kormushev

Petar Kormushev and the iCub robot at IIT in Genoa, Italy.