IEEE Robotics and Automation Society IEEE

Celebration of the 50th Anniversary of Shakey

13:50-18:00, Wednesday May 27

The year 2015 marks the 50th anniversary of the Shakey project. Conducted at the Stanford Research Institute (now SRI), this project in many ways paved the way for today's research in robotics and AI. Many accomplishments of this project are still today considered seminal in our community.

Interestingly, in 1965 there was no significant distinction between research in AI, robotics, computer vision, and machine learning. Relevant activities were conducted within a single project, by researchers collaborating very closely. Over the past decades, there has been a trend in this area toward specialization, leading to a significant separation of the subfields: we now have separate conferences for AI, robotics, vision, and machine learning. Recently, many prominent researchers have voiced the belief that we need to reverse this separation to make progress towards artificial intelligent robotic systems.

We hope that the Celebration of the 50th Anniversary of Shakey will mark the beginning of a new era; an era in which robotics and AI continuously move closer together and mutually benefit from this development. We hope that you will come and participate and build relationships that lead to joint research efforts. We hope you will join us to learn about the past and to shape the future!


The afternoon will feature two keynotes connecting historical perspectives with visions about the future of robotics and AI in two keynote presentations and a panel discussion on the relationship between AI and robotics and how it should evolve to make progress towards the goals shared by these communities. In an attempt to bring the robotics and AI communities closer together, the celebration will include presentations of papers from ICRA 2015 and papers from AAAI 2015, the flagship AI conference.

13:50-14:20 Keynote: Making Shakey, Peter Hart
14:30-15:02 Spotlight Talks: AAAI 2015 Papers
15:02-15:40 Panel on AI & Robotics 
Panelists: Ruzena Bajcsy, Rod Brooks, Peter Hart, Nils Nilsson, James Kuffner, Ben Kuipers, Manuela Veloso
Moderator: Raja Chatila
16:10-16:42 Spotlight Talks: ICRA 2015 Papers
16:42-17:20 Interactive Session: AAAI 2015 & ICRA 2015 Papers
17:30-18:00 Keynote: Imagining a Cloud-enabled Shakey, James Kuffner


Our celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Shakey project will connect historical perspectives with visions about the future of robotics and AI in two keynote presentations. There will be a keynote presentation by Peter Hart, a key contributor and team member of the Shakey project. He will be able to shed light onto the plans, hopes, and results of this highly ambitious project, which --- according to weekly Life magazine --- produced the "first electronic person." His experiences and views will be complemented by a second keynote presentation by James Kuffner. James is a prominent robotics researcher today and plays a key role in Google's robotics activities.

Panel Discussion on the Relationship of AI & Robotics

The views of Peter Hart and James Kuffner will differ in many regards. These differences will serve as the starting point for a high-caliber panel discussion. In addition to the two keynote speakers, the panel includes the greats of robotics, vision, and AI:

  • Nils Nilsson, together with Peter Hart, was part of the Shakey project and has an early leader in AI; he continues to write monographs, including some of the earliest textbooks on AI.
  • Ruzena Bajcsy is one of the early visionaries at the intersection of robotics and vision, having pioneered the active vision paradigm, among many other things.
  • Rodney Brooks, the inventor of the subsumption architecture, has caused shifts of tectonic proportions in robotics, both in academia and in industry. He has greatly affected the development of robotics over the last thirty years.
  • Manuela Veloso and
  • Ben Kuipers both are current prolific and recognized leaders who successfully run research endeavors at the intersection of robotics and AI; they will be able to provide today's perspective on both fields.

The panel will be moderated by the IEEE RAS president, Raja Chatila.

Technical Papers from AAAI 2015 and ICRA 2015

In an attempt to bring the robotics and AI communities closer together again, the celebration will provide a forum for papers from the most recent robotics and AI flagship conferences. Eight papers from this ICRA 2015 have been selected to be presented alongside eight papers from AAAI 2015. These papers will be presented in the same way all papers at this conference are presented: including a brief oral presentation and an extensive interactive session.

AAAI 2015 Papers to be Presented

These papers will be presented with 3-minute spotlight talks from 14:30-15:02 and then in an interactive session, together with the papers from ICRA 2015, from 16:42-17:20.

  • Spectral Learning of Predictive State Representations with Insufficient Statistics
    Kulesza, Alex; Jiang, Nan; Singh, Satinder
  • Learning Relational Sum-Product Networks
    Nath, Aniruddh; Domingos, Pedro
  • Exploiting Submodular Value Functions for Faster Dynamic Sensor Selection
    Satsangi, Yash; Whiteson, Shimon; Oliehoek, Frans A.
  • TODTLER: Two-Order-Deep Transfer Learning
    Van Haaren, Jan; Kolobov, Andrey; Davis, Jesse
  • Compress and Control
    Veness, Joel; Bellemare, Marc G.; Hutter, Marcus; Chua, Alvin; Desjardins, Guillaume
  • Optimal Estimation of Multivariate ARMA Models
    White, Martha; Wen, Junfeng; Bowling, Michael; Schuurmans, Dale
  • Active Manifold Learning via Gershgorin Circle Guided Sample Selection
    Xu, Hongteng; Zha, Hongyuan; Li,Ren-Cang; Davenport, Mark A.
  • Deep Representation Learning with Target Coding
    Yang, Shuo; Luo, Ping; Loy, Chen Change; Shum, Kenneth W.; Tang, Xiaoou

ICRA 2015 Papers to be Presented

These papers will be presented with 3-minute spotlight talks from 16:10-16:42 and then in an interactive session, together with the papers from AAAI 2015, from 16:42-17:20.

  • An Online and Approximate Solver for POMDPs with Continuous Action Space
    Seiler, Konstantin; Kurniawati, Hanna; Singh, Surya
  • Control of Generalized Contact Motion and Force in Physical Human-Robot Interaction
    Magrini, Emanuele; Flacco, Fabrizio; De Luca, Alessandro
  • Grasping without Squeezing: Shear Adhesion Gripper with Fibrillar Thin Film
    Hawkes, Elliot Wright; Christensen, David; Han, Amy Kyungwon; Jiang, Hao; Cutkosky, Mark
  • High-Performance Robotic Muscles from Conductive Nylon Sewing Thread
    Yip, Michael C.; Niemeyer, Gunter
  • Observability, Identifiability and Sensitivity of Vision-Aided Inertial Navigation
    Hernandez, Joshua; Tsotsos, Konstantine; Soatto, Stefano
  • Flight Control Systems of a Quad Tilt Rotor Unmanned Aerial Vehicle for a Large Attitude Change
    Oosedo, Atsushi; Abiko, Satoko; Kuno, Atsushi; Narasaki, Shota; Konno, Atsushi; Uchiyama, Masaru
  • Learning Legged Swimming Gaits from Experience
    Meger, David Paul; Gamboa Higuera, Juan Camilo; Xu, Anqi; Giguere, Philippe; Dudek, Gregory
  • Movement Primitives via Optimization
    Dragan, Anca; Muelling, Katharina; Bagnell, James; Srinivasa, Siddhartha