Featured News

Pushing the boundaries of social robotics

What is it about a person that makes others open up to them? You know the type – that person in the office that most people feel comfortable with.

What if that person could be a robot? What would that robot require in its programming to make others feel safe? Would it have a voice? And if it did have a voice, what would that voice sound like?

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Jan. 2015

​Launch of new ARC Centre of Excellence

The UQ Node of the ARC Centre of Excellence for the Dynamics of Language (CoEDL) was launched by Professor Max Lu, Provost of UQ, in the Advanced Engineering Building on Thursday 15th January 2015. It featured a range of talks from ITEE researchers including Janet Wiles, Lydia Byrne and Scott Heath from Complex and Intelligent Systems, and Ben Matthews and Pete Worthy from Interaction Design.

"The Centre aims to transform the understanding of language, drawing on the unparalleled linguistic diversity of the Asia-Pacific region to build models of language structure, learning, use and evolution treating language and languages as perpetually dynamic systems pervaded by variation at all levels." For more information see www.dynamicsoflanguage.edu.au/

Will social robots need to be consciously aware?

The IEEE Autonomous Mental Development newsletter has a new edition out, with an invitation for dialog initiated by Janet Wiles on the question of whether social robots (like the iRat) will need to be consciously aware.

"A large research community is today working towards the objective of building robots capable of believable, relevant and useful social interaction with humans. We are far from understanding what “consciousness” is, but intuition tells us that it would be very difficult for an “unconscious” human to enter into a social interaction. So what about robots? At least can we identify levels of awareness (of the self, of others) which constitute a necessary basis on which to build social competence?" Pierre-Yves Oudeyer, Editor of the IEEE CIS Newsletter on Autonomous Mental Development http://www.cse.msu.edu/amdtc/amdnl/AMDNL-V11-N2.pdf

Dec. 2014

ARC Discovery Project Success

Successful ARC Discovery Projects - to commence in 2015

In 2014 Professor Janet Wiles and Dr. Daniel Angus were awarded an ARC Discovery project ‘Evaluating recurrence as a measure of change in interpersonal dynamics’.

This project involves collaboration with Professor Helen Chenery, Executive Dean of Medicine at Bond University and UQ Affiliate of the Asian Pacific Centre for Neuromodulation.

It will develop practical techniques that enable automatic evaluation of communication dynamics in areas such as education, health, public discourse, and science communication; all situations where interactions evolve over time. The techniques will be used to develop automated intelligent systems that extend complex systems theory for recurrence analysis to evolving communication dynamics, improving communication outcomes in social contexts.


Congratulations to Nikodem Rybak for his UQ grad school scholarship.

Nov. 2014

Summer Scholars

Welcome our latest group of summer students: Joshua Arnold, Matthew Hamlet, Changxun Li, Rollsy Ponmattam, Tharun Sonti, Jonathon Taufatofua, and Peter Worthy.

Sep. 2014


The ARC Centre of Excellence for the Dynamics of Language has officially started. Congratulations! Professor Janet Wiles is a member of this centre and Dr. Daniel Angus, Lydia Byrne, Amy Gibson and Nikodem Rybak are affiliate members.

Jun. 2014

Congratulations to Scott Heath for winning The Associate Professor David Carrington Prize for Best Presentation Related to Information Technology and Electrical Engineering at the UQ EAIT Postgraduate Research Conference 2014.

Feb. 2014

Congratulations to Lydia Byrne for being awarded an Australian Postgraduate Award.