Högskolan i Skövde

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  • Public defence: 2023-12-19 09:00 ASSAR Industrial Innovation Arena (stora scenen/main stage) & online, Skövde
    Iriondo Pascual, Aitor
    University of Skövde, School of Engineering Science. University of Skövde, Virtual Engineering Research Environment.
    Simulation-based multi-objective optimization of productivity and worker well-being2023Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    In industry, simulation software is used to simulate production, making it possible to predict events in production, calculate times and plan production, even in the early phases of the production development process. Software known as digital human modelling (DHM) tools can also be used to simulate humans working in production. When simulating digital human models, ergonomics evaluations can be carried out to assess whether workstation designs offer appropriate ergonomic conditions for the workers. However, simulations performed to predict and plan production are usually done separately from the human simulations performed to evaluate ergonomics. This can lead to suboptimal solutions in which a factory is optimized to improve either productivity or ergonomics. This thesis outlines the hypothesis that more optimal solutions for workstation design, layout and line balancing can be obtained in simulations by optimizing productivity and ergonomic factors simultaneously instead of considering them separately. Hence, the aim is to carry out research on the development of a simulation-based multi-objective optimization method for productivity and ergonomic factors and to realize the method as a software tool in order to test and communicate it. From an application and societal-impact perspective, the overall objective is to offer a new approach for designing production systems that focuses on both over-all system performance and the well-being of workers, reduces the effort of engineers and helps industry create more productive and sustainable workspaces.

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  • Public defence: 2023-12-21 13:00 D201, Skövde
    Mahmoud, Sara
    University of Skövde, School of Informatics. University of Skövde, Informatics Research Environment.
    Cognitively inspired design: Rethink the wheel for self-driving cars2023Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This thesis examines Cognitively Inspired Design (CID), which is the process of transferring cognitive science frameworks and theories to intelligent systems in an application context. The thesis studies the relation between cognitive science and the traditional approach to developing systems. There are numerous differences and challenges between those two fields, making the transformation from cognitive science to designing a novel cognitive system a challenging process. To examine this process, the Guest and Martin (2021) multi-layer model has been utilized. The model proposes a sequence of six layers in which a researcher follows from a defined cognitive concept or framework to an empirical experiment of a computational model. This multi-layered model is a path function in which each layer is a function that takes the input from the previous layer and passes the output to the following layer.

    The thesis takes the application of self-driving cars as the context of study. Self-driving cars are considered one of the most important applications requiring a high level of intelligence and cognitive ability because they encounter real world scenarios and the risk of failure may cost lives. This thesis analyzes the transformation of CID in three main studies.

    The first study theoretically analyzes the applicability and compares the different cognitive paradigms and current AI techniques for self-driving cars. The thesis argues for exploring the emergent paradigm as a less explored paradigm in cognitive systems compared to its main opponent paradigm; the cognitivist. The emergent paradigm is claimed to describe the interactive nature of the human cognition. The analysis highlights the opportunities that the field of self-driving cars benefits from when considering the characteristics of the emergent paradigm.

    The second study considers the path function for a selected emergent paradigm theory. The study focuses on the aspect of how humans learn from hypothetical scenarios before encountering them in the real world, in particular, learning how to handle rare scenarios that are difficult to learn in the real world. The study addresses the mechanism for automatically generating these scenarios without being designed and created manually by a developer. The study considers curriculum learning as the candidate theory subject of study. The process of transferring this theory is studied using the path function multilayer model. The study conducts an experiment to address the relation between the importance of the theory in human learning and its equivalence in artificial cognitive systems.

    The third study focuses on more debatable theories in the emergent paradigm, in particular enactive and embodiment theories. These theories have gained much attention in research because of the high promise they may deliver for advancing the field of artificial cognitive systems. The applicability of the transition of these theories into artificial cognitive systems is examined in relation to the application of self-driving cars, using the path function multi-layer model. The study considers the aspects that support and hinder such transformation.

    The thesis concludes by discussing the current state of CID and the aspects the researchers and developers need to consider in this process before, during, and after the transformation. Overall, the thesis attempts to study cognitive theories mainly from an engineering perspective. In short, the thesis focuses on the transformation of CID, not the promise of delivering a novel cognitive system solution.

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