The key components of feedback control systems -- sensors, actuators, computation, power, and communication -- are continually becoming smaller, lighter, more robust, higher performance, and less expensive. By using appropriate algorithms and system architectures, it is thus becoming possible to "close the loop" on almost any machine, and to create new capabilities that fully exploit their dynamic potential. In this talk I will discuss various projects -- involving mobile robots, flying machines, an autonomous table, and actuated wingsuits -- where these new machine competencies are interfaced with the ultimate dynamic entities: human beings.
Bio: Spanning academics, business and the arts, Raffaello D'Andrea's career is built on his ability to bridge theory and practice: He is Professor of Dynamic Systems and Control at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) in Zurich, where his research redefines what autonomous systems are capable of. He is also co-founder of Kiva Systems (recently acquired by Amazon), a robotics and logistics company that develops and deploys intelligent automated warehouse systems. He was also the faculty advisor and system architect of the Cornell Robot Soccer Team, four time world champions at the international RoboCup competition. In addition, he is an internationally-exhibited new media artist, best known for the Robotic Chair (Ars Electronica, ARCO, London Art Fair, National Gallery of Canada) and Flight Assembled Architecture (FRAC Centre, France). Other creations and projects include the Flying Machine Arena, the Distributed Flight Array, the Blind Juggler, the Balancing Cube, and RoboEarth.