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GASE Summer Program goes to NTNU

Lê Hoa Nghiêm, a master’s student from the Università degli Studi di Cassino e del Lazio Meridionale, Avijit Balabantaray, a Bachelors student from Centurion University of Technology & Management in India, and Javed Ahmad, a master’s student from the Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM), have been working with Professor Jacky Baltes at National Taiwan Normal University during the MOST GASE Summer Program.

The participants’ project focuses on the implementation of AI in computer systems and robotics. For example, Nghiêm is working on refining the motor functions in the hand of a large robot. Specifically, combining artificial intelligence algorithms and traditional computing algorithms to allow the robot to detect a hand and shake it. She is also learning how to link the algorithm to a humanoid robot found in Prof. Baltes lab and helping control its movements. Though Nghiêm has experience working in a lab, this is her first time working with robotic communications.

Similarly, Balabantaray has been working on the eye function of the robot. As someone unfamiliar with AI and robotics, he has been working on image processing through ROSS, an operating system specifically for robotics. Despite this being his first-ever internship, he is the first in his university to obtain an internship abroad and highly recommends his peers apply for the MOST GASE summer program in the following years. Due to his experience in the program, he is also interested in returning to Taiwan in the future and pursuing a masters degree in robotics and AI.

Along with this, Ahmad has been focusing on learning more about Python, a programing language, and how to implement these codes into the Linux computer system. Previously, he was only familiar with the Windows system and says that developing skills in Linux will allow him to apply it to his current studies in electrical engineering.

Prof. Jacky Baltes is guiding them in their lab research. This lab is focused on the development of humanoid robots and investigates its social implications in various research areas. The lab also competes in multiple highly challenging and competitive robot competitions such as FIRA, RoboCup, and the IROS Robot Magic show. We were able to interact, and see firsthand how these athletic and humanoid robots operate, and their future goals of attainment for refined mobility.

Moreover, outside of the lab, the students have been able to explore the city of Taipei and immense themselves into Taiwanese culture. Balabantaray was specifically surprised by the fact that “no matter boys or girls or elderly or young [Taiwanese people] always try to run and be health-conscious” and hopes to implement these healthy habits into his daily life.