[robotics-worldwide] Call for ICMI Multimodal Grand Challenge Proposals in Robotics

Stefanie Tellex stefie10 at csail.mit.edu
Wed Oct 26 11:00:00 PDT 2011

International Conference on Multimodal Interaction (ICMI) 2012
Santa Monica, CA, Oct. 22-26, 2012
First Call for Multimodal Grand Challenges

The International Conference on Multimodal Interaction (ICMI) is the
premier international forum for multidisciplinary research on
multimodal human-human and human-computer interaction, interfaces, and
system development. The conference focuses on theoretical and
empirical foundations, component technologies, and combined multimodal
processing techniques that define the field of multimodal interaction
analysis, interface design, and system development.

Multimodal technologies are fundamentally changing the ways people
interact with robots. Multimodal systems - recognizing language and
gesture as input to robots - facilitate and enrich social interactions
and allow people to naturally interact robotic platforms with minimal

Developing robotic systems that can robustly understand human
communication or respond to human input requires identifying the best
algorithms and their failure modes. In fields such as computer vision,
speech recognition, and computational linguistics, the availability of
datasets and common tasks have led to great progress. We invite the
community to collectively define and tackle the scientific Grand
Challenges in our domain for the next 5 years.  Multimodal Grand
Challenges are driven by ideas that are bold, innovative, and
inclusive. They should inspire new ideas in the ICMI community and
create momentum for future collaborative work. Analysis, synthesis,
and interactive tasks are all possible.  We particularly encourage
participation from the robotics community because of the fundamentally
multimodal nature of human-robot interaction.

We are seeking organizers to propose and run Grand Challenge
events. Both academic and corporate organizers are welcome. We are
looking for three types of challenges:

   * Dataset-driven challenge. This challenge will provide a dataset
     that is exemplary of the complexities of current and future
     multimodal problems, and one or more multimodal tasks whose
     performance can be objectively measured. Participants in the
     Challenge will evaluate their methods against the challenge data in
     order to identify areas of strengths and weakness.

   * User case challenge. This challenge will provide an interactive
     problem/system (e.g. dialog-based) and the associated resources,
     which can allow people to participate through the integration of
     specific modules or alternative full systems. Proposers should also
     establish systematic evaluation procedures.

   * Concept challenge. This challenge proposes new ideas (e.g. involving
     new sensors) that, while not fully tested now, could lead to
     breakthroughs if our community decided to tackle them together or

Prospective organizers should submit a five-page max proposal
containing the following information:
   * Title
   * Abstract appropriate for possible Web promotion of the Challenge
   * Detailed description of the challenge and its relevance to
     multimodal interaction.
   * Plan for soliciting participation
   * Proposed schedule for releasing datasets and receiving submissions.
   * Short bio of the organizers
   * Funding source (if any) that supports or could support the challenge
   * Preference (if any) for special session or workshop format.

Proposals will be evaluated based on originality, ambition,
feasibility, and implementation plan. The ICMI organizers offer
support with basic logistics and with the identification of additional
funding sources (e.g. for awards).  Proposals should be emailed to the
ICMI 2012 Challenge Co-Chairs. Prospective organizers are also
encouraged to contact them in case of questions.  More information is
available on the ICMI website: http://www.acm.org/icmi/2012/.

Important dates

Proposal submissions:   December 09, 2011
Notifications:          December 16, 2011
ICMI 2012:            October 22-26, 2012


Daniel Gatica-Perez
Idiap Research Institute
gatica at idiap.ch

Stefanie Tellex
stefie10 at csail.mit.edu

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