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AISB opportunities Bulletin Item

PhD position on Robots in the Metaverse, U of Eidnhoven

The Department of Industrial Design of the Technische Universiteit Eindhoven
(TU/e) has the following vacancy (code V51.062):

PhD position on Robots in the Metaverse

Project Description
The Metaverse (global standards among real and virtual worlds) project will
provide a standardized global framework that enables the interoperability
between virtual worlds (as for example Second Life, World of Warcraft, IMVU,
Google Earth and many others) and the real world (robots, sensors,
actuators, vision and rendering, social and welfare systems, banking,
insurance, travel, real estate and many others). The project is a funded
through the European ITEA organization and the Dutch SenterNovem

The Metaverse project will start with a state-of-the-art review of existing
technology. The first step to classify robots is to create a taxonomy and
nomenclature that may be inspired by the Linnaean classification system. The
robot taxonomy will define the criteria on which the classes and orders may
be distinguished. Some first works on robot taxonomies are available (Fong,
Nourbakhsh, & Dautenhahn, 2003; Yanco & Drury, 2004) and will be examined
for applicability. The robot taxonomy will then be applied to robots,
starting with currently available robots and then extending to historical
important robots. Their data will be gathered in a web-based database, the
Internet Robot Database (IRDB). The IRDB will be setup as a community
process that will enable the interested audience to continuously expand and
improve the database. Based on the IRDB and the taxonomy, a communication
standard and protocol will be developed in close collaboration with the
other Metaverse partners, including Philips Research, Vrije Universiteit
Amsterdam and Utrecht University. Last, several usage scenarios for the
communication standard and protocol will be developed and tested.

The Department of Industrial Design
The Department of Industrial Design (ID) of the Eindhoven University of
Technology (TU/e), is a rapidly growing department. The department consists
of 500 students at the bachelor, master and PhD level in addition to around
100 faculty members. ID focuses on intelligent products, services and
networks. These innovative products enable people to interact with the
environment in an optimal and flexible way. This project will be embedded
into the Designed Intelligent Group (DI), which is a multidisciplinary and
highly international group addressing the design of the intelligence in
adaptive systems, products and related services. The cooperating disciplines
include computer science, electrical engineering, neural computing, software
engineering, psychology and industrial design.

The candidate should have a Masters degree in computer science, information
science or a close related field. He/she should be seriously interested in
robotics, taxonomies, web technologies and communication protocols, as
witnessed by project results or relevant courses. The candidate must be able
to co-operate in a multidisciplinary and international team. The candidate
needs to have a scientific attitude and the motivation to perform his/her
research at the high level of technological design within the given time

Appointment and Salary
The appointment is for four years. As an employee of the university you will
receive a competitive salary as well as excellent employment conditions
(including excellent sport facilities and child care). The research in this
project must be concluded with writing a PhD thesis. A salary is offered
starting at EUR 2000,- per month (gross) in the first year and increasing up
to EUR 2558,- per month (gross) in the last year. Moreover 8% bonus share
(holiday supplement) is provided annually. Assistance for finding
accommodation can be given.

Further Information and Application
Further information about the project, including a full project description,
can be obtained from Dr Christoph Bartneck (+31 40 247 5175; General information about the organization and the
hiring procedure can be requested from Ms. Julma Braat, personnel assistant,
(+31 40 247 5883;

Please send your application either as a printed version to the mailing
address below or as a PDF version by email to Julma Braat
( Your application must include a letter explaining
your specific interest in the project, an extensive curriculum vitae, a list
of three references, and the vacancy code V51.062. Application will be
accepted until October 1st, 2008.

Eindhoven University of Technology
Department of Industrial Design
Attn. Ms. J. Braat, room HG 3.92
P.O. Box 513, 5600 MB Eindhoven
The Netherlands