The MidGEN project is funded by the Initiatives de Recherche Stratégiques call of the “Investissements d’avenir” program (ANR-15-IDEX-02). The project funds a PhD student, Louis Airale, who is co-advised between Prof. Dominique Vaufreydaz and myself.
This project addresses researches within the so-called “Ambient Assisted Living” (AAL) research field, more precisely on assistance to elderly or frail people. This topic is of interest as a societal challenge in the near future. The current researches on assistive systems for elderly range from smartphone helping applications to companion robots at home. For the last, the main challenge resides in building companion robots with a social competence in perceiving, reasoning and expressing the social and emotional aspects of interactions with human, also known as the “social presence.”
The scientific ambition of the MIDGen project is to conceive multimodal data generation techniques conditioned by a set of continuous and discrete interpretable variables characterizing the social interaction. These techniques should be used and useful to train the perception and decision-making algorithms of robotic platforms without the need of gathering huge datasets and manually annotating them.