Imitation Learning, Robotics, Machine Learning, Virtual Reality.
Mail. Robotics & Intelligent Machines, 801 Atlantic Drive, Atlanta, Georgia 30332
Office. Room 255, College of Computing
Heni Ben Amor joined the Intelligent Autonomous Systems Group at the Technische Universitaet Darmstadt as a postdoctoral fellow in October, 2011. Before moving to TU Darmstadt, Heni was a full-time research associate at the Technical University Freiberg working on several projects funded by the DFG. In Freiberg he completed a Ph.D. in computer science ("summa cum laude") with a dissertation entitled "Imitation Learning of Motor Skills for Synthetic Humanoids". His Ph.D. research was conducted under the supervision of Prof. Bernhard Jung and Prof. Hiroshi Ishiguro (University of Osaka, Japan) and received the Bernhard-v.-Cotta Dissertation Prize in 2011.
In 2005, Heni received a "Diplom-Informatiker" (German M.Sc.) degree from the University of Koblenz-Landau where he studied Computational Visualistics. At the Univ. of Koblenz-Landau, he was a member of the AI research group lead by Prof. Ulrich Furbach and was actively involved in the RoboCup research community. His Master's thesis had the title "Intelligent Exploration for Genetic Algorithms". In 2005, funded by an InWent-Scholarship, Heni was a visiting scholar at the Intelligent Robotics Lab of the University of Osaka, Japan. Under the supervision of Prof. Hiroshi Ishiguro and with colleagues such as Shuhei Ikemoto and Takashi Minato, he worked on motion control algorithms for android robots. Since then, Heni concentrates on robot learning algorithms for solving difficult motor skill problems. In particular, he investigates imitation- and interaction learning methods that allow robots to acquire complex behaviors. Recently, he was also elected as fellow of the Daimler-Benz Foundation.
Heni's work on inverse steering behaviors has been used in several commercial applications such as video games or the Pathfinder Emergency Egress Simulator. He is also one of the main developers of the Kinect 3D scanning library called Scivi.
Heni is editing a special issue on "Autonomous Grasping and Manipulation" for the Autonomous Robots Journal. He also organized the workshop "Beyond Robot Grasping: Modern Approaches for Dynamic Manipulation" at the International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS 2012).
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