The University of Edinburgh -
Division of Informatics
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Research Paper #909

Title:Exploring the Role of Emotions in Autonomous Robot Learning
Authors:Gadanho,S; Hallam,JC
Date:Apr 1998
Presented:Submitted to Emotional and Intelligent - AAAI 1998 Fall Symposium Series
Abstract:Autonomy is a very important property for a robot to have, yet implementing it in a root is far from trivial, particularly when one requires the meaning of autonomy to include self-motivation, instead of mere automaticity. The fact that emotions are considered to be essential to human reasoning and human motivation in particular, suggests that they might play an important role in robot autonomy. The purpose of the work reported here is to know if and how emotions can help a robot in achieving autonomy. Experimental work was done in a simulated robot that adapts to its environment through the use of reinforcement learning. Results suggest that emotions can be useful in dividing the task in smaller manageable problems by focusing the attention in the relevant features of the task at any one time.

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