Wednesday, February 16, 2022 - 1:00pm to 2:00pm

Speaker Information

Sriram Sankaranarayanan
Associate Professor
Computer Science
University of Colorado, Boulder


Predicting the future states of robots through observation of its past and current actions is a very interesting problem. It is a fundamental "primitive" for applications such as runtime monitoring to prevent impending failures such as collisions or entering forbidden regions in the workspace.  In this talk, we will present a few approaches to this problem beginning with a simple learning-based extrapolation of the robot's  past positions to predict future trajectories, assuming a simple dynamical model for the robot.  Unfortunately, such an extrapolation  will remain valid only for relatively short time horizons. To improve upon this, we show how the "intent" of the agent can be represented and reasoned with. To represent intent, we use a restricted class of formulas from temporal logics as hypothesized intents. By combining these temporal logic representations through the machinery of Bayesian Inference, we show how we can predict future trajectories of robots rapidly through a combination of off-line pre-computations that enable cheaper real-time predictions. We conclude by describing ongoing work that develops a hierarchical approach wherein we separate "short-term" intents from "longer-term" intents that can be represented by the full strength of temporal logic-based specifications.  

This presentation is based on a series of joint works with Hansol Yoon and Chou Yi.

Speaker Bio

Sriram Sankaranarayanan is an associate professor of Computer Science at the University of Colorado, Boulder. His research interests include automatic techniques for reasoning about the behavior of computer and cyber-physical systems. Sriram obtained a PhD in 2005 from Stanford University where he was advised by Zohar Manna and Henny Sipma. Subsequently he worked as a research staff member at NEC research labs in Princeton, NJ. He has been on the faculty at CU Boulder since 2009. Sriram has been the recipient of awards including the President's Gold Medal from IIT Kharagpur (2000), Siebel Scholarship (2005), the CAREER award from NSF (2009), Dean's award for outstanding junior faculty (2012), outstanding teaching (2014), and the Provost's faculty achievement award (2014).