The AI Driving Olympics at NIPS 2018

Authors:

Andrea Censi Liam Paull, Jacopo Tani, Julian Zilly, Thomas Ackermann, Oscar Beijbom, Berabi Berkai, Gianmarco Bernasconi, Anne Kirsten Bowser, Simon Bing, Pin-Wei David Chen, Yu-Chen Chen, Maxime Chevalier-Boisvert, Breandan Considine, Andrea Daniele, Justin De Castri, Maurilio Di Cicco, Manfred Diaz, Paul Aurel Diederichs, Florian Golemo, Ruslan Hristov, Lily Hsu, Yi-Wei Daniel Huang, Chen-Hao Peter Hung, Qing-Shan Jia, Julien Kindle, Dzenan Lapandic, Cheng-Lung Lu, Sunil Mallya, Bhairav Mehta, Aurel Neff, Eryk Nice, Yang-Hung Allen Ou, Abdelhakim Qbaich, Josefine Quack, Claudio Ruch, Adam Sigal, Niklas Stolz, Alejandro Unghia, Ben Weber, Sean Wilson, Zi-Xiang Xia, Timothius Victorio Yasin, Nivethan Yogarajah, Yoshua Bengio, Tao Zhang, Hsueh-Cheng Wang, Matthew Walter, Stefano Soatto, Magnus Egerstedt, Emilio Frazzoli,

Published at RSS Workshop on New Benchmarks, Metrics, and Competitions for Robotic Learning

Link: Available here

The Duckiebots are ready to conquer the world!

Dear friends of Duckietown:

We are excited to bring you tremendous news about the Duckietown project.

In the past years we have had the support from many enthusiastic individuals who have donated their time and efforts to help the Duckietown project grow, and grown it has!

Duckietown started at MIT in 2016 – almost two years ago. Now Duckietown classes have been taught in 10 countries with more than 700 alumni.

The last months have been a transformative period for the project, as we prepare to jump to the next level in terms of scope and reach.

The Duckietown Foundation

We have established the Duckietown Foundation, a non-profit entity that will lead the Duckietown project.

Our mission: make the world excited about the beauty, the fun, the importance, and the challenges of robotics and artificial intelligence, through learning experiences that are tangible, accessible, and inclusive.

The Duckietown Foundation will serve as the coordination point for the development of Duckietown. As a non-profit, the foundation can accept donations from individuals and companies for the promotion of affordable and fun robotics learning programs around the world.

See: our missionopen volunteer positions, how to help us.

A Kickstarter

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We are organizing a Kickstarter to make it easier for people to obtain Duckiebots and Duckietowns.

This solves the biggest hurdle so on reproducing the Duckietown experience: the the lack of a one-click solution to acquire the hardware.

Also, working with thousands of pieces allows to drive down the price and to design our own custom boards.

See: Our Kickstarter

A donation program

As much as we aim to have affordable hardware, in certain parts of the world the only realistic price is $0.

That is why we have included a donate-a-Duckiebot and donate-a-class program through the Kickstarter.

Become a friend of Duckietown and support the distribution of low-cost and playful AI and robotics education to even more schools across the globe by backing our Kickstarter campaign.

For details about donating and receiving, see Donation program.

A new website…

We’ve designed a new website that better serves users of the platform by offering support forums and more organized access to the teaching materials.

See: The new forums.

See: New “duckumentation” site docs.duckietown.org

… and 700 more new websites

We want people to share their Duckietown experiences with other Duckie-enthusiasts, whether they be far or near. That’s now possible through upwards of  700 “community” subsites, each with a blog and a forum.

For more information, see the post Communities sites launched.

The AI Driving Olympics

In addition to its role as an education platform, Duckietown is a useful research tool.

We are happy to announce that Duckietown is the official platform for the AI Driving Olympics, a machine learning competition to be held at NIPS 2018 and ICRA 2019, the two largest machine learning and robotics conferences in the world. We challenge you to put your coding to the test and join the competition.

For everything about AI-DO, see AI-DO.duckietown.org.

That’s all for now! Thanks for listening –

The Duckietown project relies on an active and engaged community, which is why we want you to stay involved! Support robotics education and research –  Sign up on our website! Back our kickstarter! Compete in the AI Driving Olympics!

 

For any additional information of if you would like to help us in other ways, please see here for how to help us.

Announcing the AI Driving Olympics (AI-DO)

Press release

The Duckietown Foundation is excited to announce the official opening of the The AI Driving Olympics, a new competition focused around AI for self-driving cars.

The first edition of the AI Driving Olympics 2018 will take place in December 2018, at NIPS, the premiere machine learning conference, in Montréal. This is the first competition that will take place at a machine learning conference with real robots.

The second edition of AI-DO is already scheduled to take place in May 2019 in conjunction with the International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA) 2019.

The competition will use the Duckietown platform, a scaled-down affordable and accessible vision-based self-driving car platform used for autonomy education and research. This open-source project originated at MIT in 2016 and is now used by many institutions worldwide.

The AI Driving Olympics is presented in collaboration with 6 academic institutions: ETH Zurich (Switzerland), Université de Montréal (Canada), NCTU (Taiwan), TTIC (USA), Tsinghua (China) and Georgia Tech (USA), as well as two industry co-organizers: nuTonomy and Amazon Web Services (AWS).

The competition will comprise 5 challenges of increasing complexity: 1) Road following on an empty road; 2) Road following with obstacles; 3) Point-to-point navigation in a city network; 4) Point to point navigation in a city network with other vehicles; and 5) Fleet planning for a full autonomous mobility on demand system.

Competitors will have access to simulators, logs, reference implementations, and finally real environments (“Robotariums”) that will be remotely accessible for evaluation. The entries that score best in the robotariums will be run during the live event at NIPS 2018 to determine the winners.

 

The competition aims at directing academic research towards the hard problems of embodied AI, such as modularity of learning processes, and learning in simulation while deploying in reality. The competition also promotes the democratization of AI/robotics research by offering a common infrastructure available to everybody through the use of remote testing facilities.

Competitors can also build their own Duckiebots using provided DIY instructions, or buy Duckiebots and Duckietown hardware through a kickstarter campaign.

For rules and time line, please see the site http://AI-DO.duckietown.org/

Global Demo Day 2017 at Montreal, Zurich and Chicago

The 2nd edition of the Duckietown demo was a an internationally coordinated event. Massive Duckietown expositions were built in ETH Zürich and Université de Montréal, and TTI Chicago also joined remotely. The event was broadcast over skype between the locations and thousands of visitors were present between the locations.

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