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Fall 2022 GRASP SFI: Roberto Calandra, Meta AI, “Perceiving, Understanding, and Interacting through Touch”

November 9 at 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM

This is a hybrid event with in-person attendance in Levine 307 and virtual attendance via Zoom.


Touch is a crucial sensor modality in both humans and robots. Recent advances in tactile sensing hardware have resulted — for the first time — in the availability of mass-produced, high-resolution, inexpensive, and reliable tactile sensors. In this talk, I will argue for the importance of creating a new computational field of “Touch processing” dedicated to the processing and understanding of touch, similarly to what computer vision is for vision. This new field will present significant challenges both in terms of research and engineering. To start addressing some of these challenges, I will introduce our open-source ecosystem dedicated to touch sensing research. Finally, I will present some applications of touch in robotics and discuss other future applications.

Roberto Calandra

Meta AI

Roberto Calandra is a Research Scientist at Meta AI (formerly Facebook AI Research). Previously, he was a Postdoctoral Scholar at the University of California, Berkeley (US) in the Berkeley Artificial Intelligence Research Laboratory (BAIR). His education includes a Ph.D. from TU Darmstadt (Germany), a M.Sc. in Machine Learning and Data Mining from the Aalto university (Finland), and a B.Sc. in Computer Science from the Università degli studi di Palermo (Italy). His scientific interests are broadly at the conjunction of Decision-making, Robotics and Machine Learning. He served the scientific community, among others, by being Program Chair for AISTATS 2020, Guest Editor for JMLR, and co-organizing over 17 workshops at international conferences (NeurIPS, ICML, ICLR, ICRA, IROS, RSS). He also led the development of DIGIT — the first commercial compact high-resolution tactile sensor.


November 9
3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Event Category:


General Robotics, Automation, Sensing and Perception (GRASP) Lab
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Levine 307
3330 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104 United States
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