Title: Imitation Learning: Computational Modeling and Robotics


Schaal, S. (1999). Is imitation learning the route to humanoid robots? Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 3(6), 233-242. http://www-clmc.usc.edu/publications/schaal-TICS99/schaal-TICS99.pdf

Learning motor skills by imitation:  a biologically inspired robotic model A. Billard Cybernetics & Systems , 32, 1-2. pp. 155-193. 1999. http://www-clmc.usc.edu/~billard/CyberneticsSystems.pdf

Modeling Imitation (A review). A. Billard. Handbook of Brain Theory and Neural Networks. M. Arbib (editor). MIT Press (In Press: 2002). http://www-clmc.usc.edu/~billard/Billard-02-d.pdf

Three questions (Pick one and answer it as a one-page essay):

1) Is imitation learning in animals a good source of inspiration for designing the learning controllers of robots? Discuss the pros and cons.

2) When learning a novel motor task (e.g. opening a toolbox), what parts of the task can be learned by imitation, and what part of the task require other forms of motor learning?

3) If you were to develop an algorithm to enable a robot to learn by imitation how to stack boxes on top of each other, what would be the key components of the algorithm?

Class notes: Here.