AAAI 2016 Spring Symposium on “Enabling Computing Research in Socially Intelligent Human-Robot Interaction: A Community-Driven Modular Research Platform



EVENT: AAAI 2016 Spring Symposia
LOCATION: Palo Alto, California, USA


 * Submission deadline: Friday, October 9, 2015
 * Notification: Friday, November 6, 2015
 * Camera-ready deadline: Tuesday, January 26, 2016
 * Workshop: Saturday, March 21, 2016 to Monday, March 23, 2016


The goal of this three-day symposium is to kick off the process of community-informed design and development of an NSF-supported low-cost hardware and software platform for computing research in human-robot interaction (HRI).


The symposium will present initial hardware design ideas and plans, along with exploratory exercises to determine the usability of proposed software systems as well as the fit of capabilities with the community’s needs. Our “design by quorum” is combined with modular design that centers on creating a standard, vetted by the HRI community, that builds on recent technologies to minimize cost. The symposium will address computing challenges that bridge AI, human-computer interaction (HCI), service robotics, and other areas related to HRI. Therefore, advances made through the discussion at the symposium will serve to push the field forward, thereby impacting the computing community at large, including AI and robotics.


The symposium invites submissions describing opinions and original work, either completed or still in progress, related to one or more of the following:
 * Recognition and generation of fundamental robot social behaviors, such as spacing (i.e., where to be), eye gaze (i.e., where to look), natural language (i.e., what to say), body language (i.e., how to act), and timing (i.e., when to act), among others
 * Human-machine dialog/interaction management, decision-making, and learning
 * Computational models of social dynamics and interaction patterns in human-robot interactions
 * Mapping, localization, path-planning, and navigation in human environments
 * Context/situational awareness and scene understanding in human-robot social interactions
 * Online adaptation to human social behavior and interaction contexts
 * Long-term learning of human behaviors, preferences, and needs
 * Software architectures, tools, and systems for facilitating human-robot interactions
 * Sensor, mechanical, and computational hardware for enabling human-robot interactions
 * Ethics in the design of social robot hardware and software


Prospective authors are invited to fill the survey (available as of September 18th, 2-15) and submit  to EasyChai any of the following:
 * Full paper (6-8 pages, PDF file)
 * Position paper (2-4 pages, PDF file)
 * Demo video (1-3 minutes, common file formats, e.g., AVI, MP4, etc.) including an extended abstract (1-2 pages, PDF file)


Submitted papers and abstracts should conform to the AAAI publication format; for templates and examples, follow this link:


To inform the discussion topics of the symposium, as well as receive shaping input from the community, participation in the Symposium will include completing a survey (anonymous or not, as preferred). The survey will be open no later than September 18th, 2015 and will be part of the Symposium submission; to receive notification once the survey is finalized, please sign up at:


In general, the organizing committee will be engaging the computing community at large periodically through surveys to elicit input and feedback on the proposed software and hardware systems being developed for the robot platform.


 * Maja Mataric’ (University of Southern California)
 * Mark Yim (University of Pennsylvania)
 * Ross Mead (University of Southern California)


CONTACT (please email to all three of us together about any workshop questions/input/feedback):
 * Maja Mataric’ (mataric(at)
 * Mark Yim (yim(at)
 * Ross Mead (rossmead(at)