21 — 06 — 18
Review: Science WM/Jam
In the Bernstein-Werkstatt Joschka Bödecker demonstrated the soccer skills of robots.

60 visitors came to the Bernstein-Werkstatt on a somewhat rainy summer day to learn about the soccer skills of robots. After the early elimination of the German national soccer team at the 2018 World Cup, they were able to celebrate the success of the German robot teams and see the little robot NAO in action on July 5, 2018. Nevertheless, Prof. Dr. Joschka Bödecker from the Excellence Cluster BrainLinks-BrainTools insisted that the goal of the Robot World Championship, which is held annually by the Robocup Association, is still a long way off. By 2050, the organizers want to set up a team that will compete against a human world champion team.

This video gives an amusing impression of the state of the art in categories such as "humanoid" or "standard platform":


Of course it was also about the science behind the competition. What technological advances are being tested on the field and why do robots actually meet to play football? Joschka Bödecker explained how machine learning in particular helped the robot team from its predecessor at the University of Freiburg Martin Riedmiller to victory in 2008. The joint test arena for robotics allows scientists to test their new learning, orientation or communication technologies. Katja Kukatz, science communicator at the Bernstein Center Freiburg, also explained in a demonstration how people can train their abilities with a technique called "reinforcement learning". Roboticians are also inspired by such methods to train learning algorithms - that's how they get robots to score a goal.

"It's like landing on the moon," explained Joschka Bödecker, "an almost unattainable, but common goal bundles all the innovative forces together and - even if it is ultimately not achieved - leaves behind a lot of useful inventions.

More information about the Science Jam format can be found here:

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