Chad Jenkins named Editor-in-Chief of the ACM Transactions on Human-Robot Interaction (THRI)

We are thrilled to become part of the ACM family of journals,” explained THRI Co-Editor-in-Chief Odest Chadwicke Jenkins of the University of Michigan. “ACM’s reputation as a publisher of computing research is unparalleled. At the same time, the broad representation of computing disciplines in the ACM, the organization’s global reach, and platforms such as the Digital Library, are a perfect complement to our own goals for THRI.

Jenkins, along with Co-Editor-in-Chief Selma Šabanović of Indiana University, have set three primary goals for the journal in the coming years, including: 1) Sustaining the intellectual growth of HRI as a field of study (both quantitatively and qualitatively), 2) Enabling timely and productive feedback from readers, and 3) Cultivating new and leading-edge ideas in both robotics and the human-centered sciences

The inaugural issue of the rebranded ACM Transactions on Human-Robot Interaction (THRI) is planned for March 2018. Those seeking to submit for the publication, or who have questions for the editors, are encouraged to visit the current HRI Journal website.

The full article.

U-M Professor Corso Awarded NSF Robotics Grant

Professor Jason Corso was awarded a new grant from the National Robotics Initiative at the National Science
Foundation. The project, a collaboration with Professor Jeffrey Siskind at Purdue University, is entitled
“RobotSLANG: Simultaneous Localization, Mapping, and Language Acquisition.” This exciting new project seeks
to address the challenge of natural communication between robots and humans for tasks involving spatial
navigation. Language is routine for most humans. Language serves myriad purposes ranging from everyday
conversation to cataloging international law; most relevant to this project are the rich linguistic elements
describing the spatial environment, the objects and places within it, and the navigable paths through it.
Yet, language continues to evade robot systems; mobile robot platforms are adept at mapping and navigation,
but they rely on metric representations of the environments. Humans and robots do not share a common language.

The project seeks to overcome this significant limitation by conjoining the well understood problem of mapping,
or more generally simultaneous localization and mapping (SLAM), with that of language acquisition that will
enable a new symbiosis between mobile robots and humans in the context of navigation tasks in novel