The Tea Time Talks 2020: Week Five

Now that the 2020 Tea Time Talks are on Youtube, you can always have time for tea with Amii and the RLAI Lab! Hosted by Amii’s Chief Scientific Advisory Dr. Richard S. Sutton, these 20-minute talks on technical topics are delivered by students, faculty and guests. The talks are a relaxed and informal way of hearing leaders in AI discuss future lines of research they may explore, with topics ranging from ideas starting to take root to fully-finished projects.

Week five of the Tea Time Talks features:

Rory Dawson: Adaptive Switching for Improved Control of Robotic Prosthesis

Rory is the lead research engineer in the BLINC Lab, where they have developed a method called Adaptive Switching. This method uses real-time predictions from general value functions to improve control of upper limb prostheses. In this talk, Rory summarizes BLINC’s previous work in this area and also suggests some ideas for future work, as well as additional application areas that may benefit from the technique.

Connor Stephens: How to Sample When No One’s Watching – Open Problems in Bandit Exploration

In this talk, Connor discusses an online learning setting in which an agent adaptively samples rewards from a finite set of distributions, but is only concerned with the reward from their final selection. He also provides a brief overview of applications and past work in this area before discussing some open problems.

Watch the Tea Time Talks live online this year, Monday through Thursday from 4:15 – 4:45 p.m. MT. Each talk will be conducted here (please note that if you are accessing the chat from an email ID outside the domain of, you may have to wait a few seconds for someone inside the meeting to let you in). You can take a look at the full schedule to find talks that interest you, subscribe to the RLAI mailing list or catch up on previous talks on the Youtube playlist.

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