We will provide customized quadrocopter platforms (type Parrot AR.Drone), which feature various neuromorphic sensors and carry a wireless low latency communication module. Remotely obtained sensor data is available on stationary computing systems, such as aVLSI chips, SpiNNaker boards, or standard computers for real-time data processing. Abstract motor commands (changes in roll, yaw, pitch, and altitude) can be sent in return to control the robots.

Robotic Platforms

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Neuromorphic Sensors

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SpiNNaker is a novel computer architecture inspired by the working of the human brain. It is a digital, configurable multi-chip multi-core platform that can be programmed at different levels:

  • Unit Level: by using C with the SpiNNaker API to design custom neural and learning algorithms, or more generally to program single units of a parallel, event-driven, real-time system.
  • Network Level: by using PyNN to configure network topologies and neural parameters (see  https://capocaccia.ethz.ch/capo/wiki/2010/spinn10).
  • Functional level: encoding functions in neurons by using the Neural Engineering Framework, a formal method for mapping control-theoretic algorithms onto the neural connections between populations of spiking neurons (see  http://neuromorphs.net/nm/wiki/ng11/results/Spinnaker).

SpiNNaker has already been interfaced with AER sensors and used to control robots in previous workshops, providing a stable and mature platform for neural and event-based computation in real time:

For more information visit:  http://apt.cs.man.ac.uk/projects/SpiNNaker/

Omnibot with 2 silicon retinas and a 48-node SpiNNaker board 48-node SpiNNaker board (864 ARM cores @ 200 MHz, 6 GByte RAM)