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Princeton Robotics Seminar - Large Language Models with Eyes, Arms and Legs

Date and Time
Friday, June 9, 2023 - 11:00am to 12:00pm
Zoom Webinar (off campus)
Princeton Robotics Seminar

Zoom link: https://princeton.zoom.us/my/robotics

Vikas Sindhwani
To become useful in human-centric environments, robots must demonstrate language comprehension, semantic understanding and logical reasoning capabilities working in concert with low-level physical skills. With the advent of modern "foundation models" trained on massive datasets, the algorithmic path to developing general-purpose “robot brains” is (arguably) becoming clearer, though many challenges remain.  In the first part of this talk, I will attempt to give a flavor of  how state-of-the-art multimodal foundation models are built, and how they can be bridged with low-level control. In the second part of the talk, I will summarize a few surprising lessons on control synthesis observed while solving a collection of Robotics benchmarks at Google. I will end with some emerging open problems and opportunities at the intersection of dynamics, control and foundation models.

Bio: Vikas Sindhwani is Research Scientist at Google Deepmind in New York where he leads a research group focused on solving a range of planning, perception, learning, and control problems arising in Robotics.  His interests are broadly in core mathematical foundations of statistical machine learning, and in end-to-end design aspects of building large-scale and robust AI systems. He received the best paper award at Uncertainty in Artificial Intelligence (UAI-2013), the IBM Pat Goldberg Memorial Award in 2014, and was finalist for Outstanding Planning Paper Award at ICRA-2022. He serves on the  editorial board of Transactions on Machine Learning Research (TMLR) and IEEE Transactions on Pattern Analysis and Machine Intelligence; he has been area chair and senior program committee member for NeurIPS, International Conference on Learning Representations (ICLR) and Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining (KDD). He previously headed the Machine Learning group at IBM Research, NY. He has a PhD in Computer Science from the University of Chicago and a B.Tech in Engineering Physics from Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Mumbai. His publications are available at: http://vikas.sindhwani.org/

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