Proposals

Quantifying Anticipatory Characteristics

Anticipation Dynamics

Anticipation and extreme events

Social Robots for Elder Companionships

Aging and anticipation

How do we quantify Anticipation.

Project Summary: (DHB) Quantifying Anticipatory Characteristics, NSF, February 2005

The ability to anticipate is vital to survival on the individual and collective levels. The aim of this proposal is to integrate a new approach into research in progress: the maintenance of anticipatory functions. The area defined as brain plasticity suggests that the will of the aging to remake themselves through behavioral therapy can help in the maintenance of cognitive and physical characteristics that make life worth living. In particular, the research project is focused on quantifying anticipatory characteristics with the aim of further designing means (e.g., interactive games) that engage the individual. The play associated with the games is bound to stimulate an active path of maintaining anticipatory functions, which tend to decline during the aging process and disappear at senescence.

The focus of the research proposed for this grant will be on: 1) knowledge acquisition in the form of quantified anticipatory characteristics; and 2) mapping from quantified cognitive characteristics underlying anticipation (such as risk associated with movement) to particular actions characteristic of play conceived as a possible behavioral therapy. Using various quantification procedures—from advanced brain imaging to motion capture—the research will establish which actions associated with playing, or with virtual exercise environments (allowing for parameter control), affect or at least influence what anticipatory characteristics. Furthermore, the research will construct brain network models of anticipation based on event-related functional imaging data (spectro-temporal) in normal and aging populations. Once this cognitive and sensory-motoric anticipatory map is outlined, it should become possible to associate it with games and learning in general, with the aim of maintaining and even enhancing predictive abilities essential to optimal functioning as individuals age.

This undertaking demands expertise in several disciplines: brain research, cognitive science, computer science, artificial intelligence, interactive arts and engineering. The common denominator is anticipation, understood as an informational process underlying the dynamics of the living. In this sense, the research advances new scientific hypotheses from which many disciplines can profit.

Anticipation dynamics—NSF, (pdf), June 2005

Anticipation is an underlying characteristic of human actions. The theoretical challenge of this project is to produce coherent and consistent descriptions of perceptual, motoric, and cognitive processes that facilitate anticipation. Dynamic characteristics of anticipation, such as balance maintenance under variable conditions of movement and action, perception of direction and depth, performance readiness and adequacy in relation to the task, operating under uncertainty and with incomplete information (from navigating in new conte x ts to finding one's way under the threat of e x treme events), are e x pressions of comple x anticipatory processes. In recent years, knowledge about anticipatory systems has informed a variety of cutting-edge scientific and technological endeavors: computing anticipatory characteristics, automated learning, anticipatory engineering, risk management (including e x treme events).

For the purposes of this research, anticipation e x pressed in the dynamics of human action will be assessed using motion capture complemented by real-time Electromyogram (EMG), and eventually Electrodermal (EDA) and electrocardiograms (EKG). This novel approach goes beyond biometric applications and current motion control mechanisms.

Anticipation and Extreme Events: Learning from Katrina, NSF, SGER, (pdf) September 2005

While some researchers will take photographs and other images of the destruction caused by the hurricane, and others will map the geography before reconstruction will take place, the proposed research will generate a partial cognitive map of the human experience of the extreme event. Therefore, the research team will select from the evacuees those persons who lived through the hurricane, in order to extract data that documents how the anticipatory characteristics that contributed to their survival are expressed. The hurricane experience cannot (and should not) be emulated. We are looking for the “fingerprints,” the cognitive traces that testify to the role of anticipation. The idea is to capture enough knowledge about how people behave under extreme circumstances, in order to design and implement an interactive warning system based on the model of distributed multi-user games.

Social Robots for Elder Companionship, an STTR research project for NIH, December 2005

Human Emulation Robotics (HER) in cooperation with antÉ --Institute for Research in Anticipatory Systems (in short antÉ ) at The University of Texas at Dallas (in short UTD) proposes a social robot system to emulate a human presence for social interaction, companionship and cognitive stimulation for the elderly. The companionship intended is supposed help maintain cognitive functions by actively engaging the aging individual. It will also serve as an intuitive interface to the Internet, including safety services, with the ultimate goal of improving quality of life for the elderly. The Seneludens Robot was conceived within the broader project Seneludens

Aging and anticipation, invited application by The Institute for the Study of Aging (ISOA),

Although medical advances effectively address many disorders that affect the aging, cognitive and sensorimotor performance continue to decline. This becomes a burden for the aging and their caregivers, the healthcare system, and society. Numerous studies involving both animals and humans have demonstrated that environmental enrichment and behavioral training result in improved performance. This is directly related to “rewiring” brain networks. Our approach is guided by the premise that experience-dependent brain plasticity can be preserved in the aged when given the right kind of stimulation. Cognitive and sensorimotor stimulation can be improved by engaging individuals in challenging and motivating tasks. The medium of engagement we intend to pursue is games. Like researchers working on cognitive models in support of new forms of teaching and learning, we understand “games” to be rich interactive environments addressing all the senses, the “motoric intelligence,” as well as the multitude of brain processes through which human rationality is expressed.

How do we quantify anticipation? ARPATP Pre-Proposal, October, 2005

Maintenance of balance, action preparation and decision making are expressions of complex anticipatory processes. The aim of this proposal is to integrate a new approach into research in progress: the maintenance of anticipatory functions. Our approach is guided by the premise that experience-dependent brain plasticity can be preserved in the aged when given the right kind of stimulation. In particular, the research project is focused on quantifying anticipatory characteristics with the aim of further designing means (e.g., interactive games) that engage the individual.

antÉ : Institute for Research in Anticipatory Systems
The University of Texas at Dallas © 2004, 2005