Angelo Cangelosi
University of Plymouth
A316 Portland Square
PL 4 8AA Plymouth
United Kingdom


+44 1752 586217

European Commission 7th Framework Programme

01. Home

tony icub



Download the developmental robotics research roadmap on  action and language learning

The ITALK project aims to develop artificial embodied agents able to acquire complex behavioural, cognitive, and linguistic skills through individual and social learning. This will be achieved through experiments with the iCub humanoid robot to learn to handle and manipulate objects and tools autonomously, to cooperate and communicate with other robots and humans, and to adapt to changing internal, environmental, and social conditions.

The project objectives are

  •  the development of new theoretical insights, models and scientific explanations of the integration of action, social and linguistic skills to bootstrap cognitive development
  • new interdisciplinary sets of methods for analysing the interaction of language, action and cognition in humans and artificial cognitive agents,
  • new cognitively-plausible engineering principles and approaches for the design of robots with behavioural, cognitive, social and linguistic skills
  •  robotic experiments on object manipulation and language with the iCub robot

Highlights of current achievements

During the first three years of the project, the following main results have beecn achieved

  • Upgrade of the iCub robot and delivery of four new iCubs for the consortium partners
  • Development of the open source iCub simulator (currently also being used in labs outside the consortium) and other software tools such as the Aquila application for GPU-based experiments
  • Development of a Roadmap for developmental robotics reserach on action and langauge integration
  • Experiments on motor primives and compositional action learning
  • HRI experiments on the acquisition of phonetics and referential skills such as negation
  • HRI experiments on acoustic packaging and the tutoring spotter
  • Replication of the "modi experiment" from developmental psychology literature (with Linda Smith BabyLab, Indiana University, USA)
  • Evolutionary modelling for action and language learning
  • Over 100 publications in the first 3 years of work, including 34 journal articles, 48 conference proceedings papers, 15 book chapters and 21 abstract/poster presentations