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Research Abstracts - 2007
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The Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) at MIT is an interdisciplinary laboratory with faculty from seven academic departments and students from even more departments. With over ninety faculty, senior and principal research scientists, and more than 400 supported graduate students our lab is the largest and most intellectually diverse laboratory at MIT. Along with that diversity however is a strong commitment to collaborative research. Many faculty have joint projects within CSAIL and with other groups around the campus. Additionally we have a number of cross cutting projects and centers within CSAIL, such as our T-Party project, our joint lab with Nokia Research, the Center for Information Security and Privacy, the Center for Robotics, and the Center for Biological and Computational Learning.

In order to facilitate our operations we organize the laboratory into four groupings which roughly correspond to both our spatial organization within the Dreyfoos and Gates towers of the Ray and Maria Stata Center, and which correspond very roughly to the areas of closest collaboration. However these are only very rough groupings and our lab wide initiatives and smaller research collaborations easily span them. The following brief descriptions do not do any of these groupings full justice but at least point in the directions of the research carried out within them.

  • Perception and Learning includes work on the sorts of things that all people manage to do effortlessly, both emulating those abilities, and simulating their appearance.
  • Physical, Biological and Social Systems might also be called complex adaptive systems, and covers work from robotics, to molecular biology, to semantic systems, to computational models of politics.
  • Systems covers all aspects of the building of both hardware and software computational systems, including computer architecture and networks.
  • Theory looks at the fundamental mathematical underpinnings of all aspects of computer science and artificial intelligence.

The set of abstracts which are presented here represent many of the research projects that are going on within CSAIL. They are organized along the lines of the major research groupings. They illustrate the wide variety of work that goes on at CSAIL and the difficulty in classifying them into any ontology illustrates the extent to which the research cuts across any set of easily defined boundaries.

The work reported in this set of abstracts is supported by a wide range of sponsors. They include US government sponsors; AF, AFOSR, AFRL, Army, ARO, CIA, DARPA, DOD, DOE, DOED, DOI, DOJ, NASA, NGIA, NIH, NSF, ONR and Navy; large scale institutional collaborations; Singapore-MIT Alliance, ITRI, CSIRO, and Cambridge-MIT Institute and ETRI; private companies Quanta, Nokia, Microsoft, Shell, Dupont, Toyota, Boeing, ABB, BAE Systems, Ford, NTT, Intel, Honda, CISCO, Sun, Mitre, Pfizer and SAP; and other Institutions; DSO National Laboratories, the Epoch Foundation and FOI Sensorteknik, the Packard Foundation and the Sloan Foundation.

We are grateful to all these organizations for their ongoing support.

Rodney Brooks

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The Stata Center, Building 32 - 32 Vassar Street - Cambridge, MA 02139 - USA
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