Educational background and field(s) of interest
I have a MSc degree in Mathematics, and a PhD in Computer Science. I specialized on Artificial Intelligence in the 1980’s and further focused on Evolutionary Computing in the 1990’s. Currently, I am full professor on the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam where I lead the Computational Intelligence Group and visiting professor on the University of York, UK. My active research area is Evolutionary Robotics and Artificial Life. In short, I am working on evolving and learning machines that reproduce, improve themselves, and develop intelligence over time. In particular, I am studying morphologically evolving robots (mainly in simulation) that evolve their bodies and brains simultaneously.
How did you get involved in The Phoenix Project?
I got involved through personal contact with the coordinator, Prof. Baltus.
What is your motivation to contribute to The Phoenix Project?
The vision behind PHOENIX is very close my long-term research objective: use evolution and learning methods to develop robots for extremely challenging applications.
What do you intend to achieve as a member of the project?
I hope to learn about the engineering side of the coin regarding robots, sensors, actuation etc. This will enrich my own experience that is mainly simulation based and algorithmic. Meanwhile, I hope to contribute with knowledge about evolutionary robotics and learning machines. Last, but not least, I hope be part of nice team and share the excitement of joint efforts and achievements.