Artificial Intelligence & Information Technologies
Artificial intelligence could see computers take on super-human powers – thinking and behaving just like us, and embedding themselves in our working world. Quantum technologies promise super-powerful processing, solving all sorts of complex data puzzles – like drug research – at lightning speed.
Explore other themes of FET research
Stories in Artificial intelligence & IT
Programming the forces of evolution
Robots can utilise computational natural selection to boost experimental power and avoid hours of trial and error
Soft robotics: what the octopus has taught us
Ten years ago the octopus inspired the world's first entirely soft robot, made with silicone. The artificial octopus allowed researchers to simplify control and sensory-motor behaviour of robots, enabling them to be more efficient than rigid-linked hard machines. Everything started from a dream of researcher Cecilia Laschi
Plant roots inspire 3D-printed automotive sensors
Superfast all-RAM processors could bring high-performance computers to the masses
Research projects in this field
The HYSCORE project targets the development of long-distance networks based on the laws of quantum physics. The idea it to exploit a particular effect, known as quantum entanglement, to allow information exchange through particles far away from each other. These technologies are key steps towards the creation of the quantum internet, which is expected to open-up completely new communication frontiers.
The QuProCS project focuses on the development of new techniques to simulate the behaviour of quantum systems. Such simulation techniques, also based on the laws of quantum physics, aim at probing the studied systems in a less invasive way than current approaches. In fact, present-day strategies distort the properties of the investigated systems, hence affecting the results of the measurements.The ultimate goal is to help disclose the quantum properties of Nature and contribute to the development of quantum technologies.
The goal of the subCULTron project is the development of three types of robots, to be distributed in the Venice lagoon. Besides monitoring the water, the robots will learn how to cooperate with each other and how to react to the environment. This is expected to lead to significant improvements in the field of artificial intelligence.
The GHOST project targets an enhancement of current display interfaces. This is based on the development of malleable displays which humans could shape when performing input-output operations. Contrarily to present-day, bidimensional displays, such tools would stimulate human thinking and imagination by providing it with access to the the third dimension.
The goal of the ExCAPE project is to significantly accelerate the development of new drugs. The idea is to combine machine learning and supercomputers to rapidly design new molecules and increase the efficiency of drug testing.
The MUSE project targets the creation of 3D virtual words from written texts. This is based on the development of an algorithm which takes natural language as input, associates the content to 3D visual data stored in a dedicated data base, and generates the described virtual scenario. The outcome of the MUSE project may have applications in a variety of fields, from facilitating the explanation of instructions to the improvement of medical treatments.
The SceneNet project aims to combine audio-visual recordings of public events. Such recordings are made by multiple individuals with their own electronic devices and from arbitrary points of view. By aggregating the disparate files it will be possible to generate multi-view videos of the considered event. This technology may be applied to a number of fields, ranging from medicine to police investigations.
The SmartSociety project focused on the interaction between humans and machines. Operatively, the project investigated new kinds of so-called Collective Adaptive Systems. The ultimate goal was to contribute to the development of hybdrid systems where people and machines work together by implementing each other.
The DEDALE project targets the development of new tools for the era of Big Data. Such tools are analysis methods based on a machine learning approach and designed for multivariate, manifold-based signals. The ultimate goal is to enable better preservation of the intrinsic properties of the real data.
The TOLOP project investigated the production of innovative, single-electron devices in the field of low-power electronics. Such devices may deliver a significant improvement over current transistors and find applications in the development of quantum computers.
harvest4d targets a paradigm change in data acquisition and processing technology. Currently, 3D rendering of objects and places require dedicated scanning campaigns and post-production for optimal triangulated and textured models. The goal of the project is to go beyond this goal-driven acquisition approach in favour of sensors and available data determining the acquisition process.
The ASSISIbf projects aims to apply artificial intelligence to the study of animal behaviour. This is done by developing small robotic animals which integrate in societies of bees and fishes. The ultimate goal is to find new ways to protect endangered species and the environment.
The Swarm-Organ Project worked on developing new algorithms in swarm robotics to make it more efficient. Rather than looking to the insect world as previous studies in swarm technology have done, the project studied cell behaviour to extrapolate organisation principles derived from GRNs (gene regulatory networks). The project carried out successful demonstrations of robots emulating cell behaviour, particularly in terms of regeneration behaviour.
The MAGicSky project is developing the technology to make use of skyrmions in conventional integrated circuits in nanoscale devices. This will have a major impact on the information technology of the future and on data storage and use.
The goal of the ODYCCEUS project is to develop two new applications to observe and moderate opinions exchanges that occur on the net. Game theory, opinion dynamics, and language analysis will help to comprehend and prevent the raising of social conflicts by monitoring online data exchanges publicly available.
The TimeStorm project aims to implement human-like cognitive skills in artificial agents, such as robots. To overcome this challenge, researchers have studied the principles of time processing in the human brain and replicated them in-silico, because our sense of time plays a key role in the development of many cognitive processes. Introducing time perception in artificial agents will contribute to the design of truly autonomous, cognitive machines.
FEMTOTERABYTE aims to develop a magnetic storage technology to make the hard-drives about 100 times smaller and 10 000 times faster than those we use today. For this it envisions an entirely new memory unit for the computer data storage. Such units would be just a few nanometers in size and will be operated with short pulses of visible light for writing and reading the information.
The PLANTOID project designed and developed a number of innovative robots and ICT technologies directly inspired by the roots of plants. These robotic roots are equipped with sensors monitoring the environment and giving inputs to let them decide how to move into the soil. This technology may find applications in soil analysis, agriculture, medicine and space exploration.
The VECMA project aims to increase the confidence on scientific simulations running on peta- and exascale computers. To this aim, an algorithm which verifies and validates simulations, along with estimating their uncertainty, is developed. The outcomes of the project may find applications on many different fields, from drug discovery to material science.
The GrowBot project wishes to develop robots that imitate the behaviour of climbing plants using ICT technologies. They adapt their movements based on external environmental conditions and grow accordingly using additive manufacturing processes. This technology may find applications related to energy efficiency and harvesting.