Robotics Open House

Open House at IHMC – Friday, April 14th To celebrate the eigth annual National Robotics Week, IHMC’s Robotics researchers will welcome the public on April 14th for an Open House event in hopes of inspiring young people to seek out careers in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and math. The family-friendly event encourages scientific discovery through hands-on activities, challenges, and demonstrations while providing the opportunity to learn about robots from IHMC’s researchers and educators. Screenings of National Geographic’s Robots Movie at Naval Aviation Museum – Saturday, April 15th The Naval Aviation Museum Foundation along with IHMC will host a… Read More

Ken Ford receives top AAAI award

The Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI) has awarded one of its highest honors, the AAAI Distinguished Service Award, to Dr. Ken Ford, director and CEO of the Florida Institute for Human and Machine Cognition (IHMC). The Distinguished Service Award, established in 1999, recognizes a single individual each year “for extraordinary and sustained service” to the artificial intelligence (AI) community. Dr. Ford is the 14th honoree. In a letter to Dr. Ford announcing the honor, Awards Committee Chair Manuelo Veloso wrote that he was “specifically honored for your contributions to the field of artificial intelligence through sustained service,… Read More

IHMC Moves Ahead with Pensacola Expansion

The Florida Institute for Human and Machine Cognition is back on track with a planned expansion of its Pensacola research facility following a nearly year-long delay caused by flooding of downtown in April 2014. Completion is scheduled for February 2016. The contractor is Hewes and Company LLC, a Pensacola firm. Hewes has done extensive work across the Pensacola area, including large buildings for Pensacola Christian College, Avalex Technologies and AppRiver. “We’re really pleased to be back on track with the new building,” said IHMC Director and CEO Ken Ford. “The delay was troublesome, but the architects were able to develop… Read More

IHMC Board Member Cited for High Honor

Dr. Alain T. Rappaport has been named a prestigious Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors (NAI). Dr. Rappaport is a member of the Florida Institute for Human and Machine Cognition (IHMC) Board of Directors and of its Science Advisory Council. Dr. Rappaport was cited as having “demonstrated a highly prolific spirit of innovation in creating or facilitating outstanding inventions that have made a tangible impact on quality of life, economic development, and the welfare of society.” The Tampa-based NAI was founded in 2010 “to recognize investigators at universities and non-profit research institutes who translate their research findings into inventions… Read More

IHMC CEO on Panel Awarding Brain Research Money for NFL Partnership

The NFL has announced seven winners of $500,000 brain research grants in Head Health Challenge II. Ken Ford, director/CEO of the Florida Institute for Human and Machine Cognition, serves on the six-person judging panel that selected the winners, who are eligible to receive up to $8.5 million to accelerate brain injury research, diagnosis and protection. The NFL’s partners in Head Health Challenge II are Under Armour and General Electric. The winners, which include researchers from the public and private sectors, were selected among nearly 500 proposals that were submitted between Sept. 2013 and Feb. 2014 from 19 countries. “We had… Read More

IHMC giving Atlas a leg up

The Florida Institute for Human and Machine Cognition (IHMC) continues to earn recognition for its development of software for the Atlas robot. A recent post on Tech Gen magazine notes IHMC’s work to advance the bipedal robot’s ability to walk more like a human. The IHMC Robotics Team has performed exceptionally well in the multi-year, international Robotics Challenge sponsored by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). IHMC came in first in the initial computer simulation trial in June 2013, and second overall in the second phase, which featured using actual robots in field trials at Homestead Miami Speedway in… Read More

Discovery Channel To Feature IHMC Exoskeleton

An upcoming segment of The Discovery Channel’s Daily Planet program will feature a new exercise exoskeleton developed by researchers at the Florida Institute for Human and Machine Cognition (IHMC) in Pensacola. Called the Grasshopper, or Hopper, the device was designed, built and tested as part of a NASA-funded project exploring the use of robotic exoskeletons for microgravity exercise. Because the Hopper uses motors instead of gravity to create the load on the user, the device is suited for use on space missions. Exercise in zero-gravity conditions is critical to maintain muscle strength and bone mass. The Hopper is designed to… Read More

IHMC robot sets world speed record

A new land-speed record for legged robots was achieved on May 22 by researchers at the Florida Institute for Human and Machine Cognition (IHMC). The HexRunner robot reached an estimated 30-33 mph on an open course, without any support tethers. The record-setting run was filmed by the Discovery Channel, which is expected to broadcast it later this summer. The HexRunner running robot on its record-setting speed run. “More significant than the top speed is showing that you can make a running robot that doesn’t need a lot of feedback from sensors, and you don’t need a lot of actuation,” said… Read More

IHMC Scientist featured at inaugural STEM Symposium

Veteran Shuttle astronaut Tom Jones, a senior research scientist at the Florida Institute for Human and Machine Cognition (IHMC), will be a featured speaker at the first-ever X-STEM: Extreme STEM Symposium in Washington, D.C., on April 24. The symposium opens the third annual USA Science & Engineering Festival Expo and Book Fair, April 26-27, hosted by sponsor Lockheed Martin. Held at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, X-STEM is a “TED-style” event for kids with talks by 50 of the nation’s most noted science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) professionals representing top universities, corporations, non-profits and governmental agencies. “I’m honored… Read More

Bradshaw to chair new Nissan advisory board

IHMC Senior Research Scientist Jeff Bradshaw has been named chair of the inaugural Scientific Advisory Council for the Nissan Research Center — Silicon Valley, in Sunnyvale, Calif. The advisory group will give guidance on matters of science, technology, research and other similar topics of special interest to Nissan Motor Corporation. That includes research regarding autonomous vehicles, connected vehicles, human machine interactions and other matters of special interest to Nissan. “I’m excited to work with this stellar group of experts,” Dr. Bradshaw said. “Nissan’s commitment to a human-centered, rather than a technology-centered, design approach puts them in a unique and enviable… Read More

Dr. Bonnie Dorr joins IHMC as an associate director, senior scientist

Pensacola – Dr. Bonnie J. Dorr, a leading researcher in the field of natural language processing, is joining the Florida Institute for Human & Machine Cognition (IHMC) as an associate director and senior research scientist at IHMC’s Ocala facility. Natural language processing is a growing research field at IHMC, and Dr. Dorr’s expertise is at the cutting edge. Her extensive research and project management experience includes deep language understanding and semantics, large-scale multilingual processing (including machine translation), and summarization. “We’re clearly pleased to add someone of Bonnie’s expertise and accomplishments,” said IHMC Director/CEO Ken Ford. “Her vision, passion and experience… Read More

IHMC Robotics featured on CNN

Pensacola – The work of the IHMC Robotics team with the Atlas humanoid robot is featured in an episode of a new monthly CNN program, The Art of Movement. The four-minute-plus feature can be seen online here: http://edition.cnn.com/video/data/2.0/video/world/2014/03/06/spc-art-of-movement-automata-b.cnn.html The segment features interviews with IHMC scientists and extensive video shot both in the IHMC Robotics Lab in Pensacola and at the DARPA Robotics Challenge (DRC) trials at Homestead Miami Speedway in December 2013. IHMC’s own video team shot some of the footage used by CNN, especially from the DARPA trials. The episode focuses on IHMC’s work with the two-legged Atlas robot, built… Read More