Bruce Randall Donald
Associate Professor
PhD MIT, 1987

My interests include robotics, microelectromechanical systems, computational geometry and artificial intelligence. Robotics is the science that seeks to forge an intelligent, computational connection between perception and action.

Working with graduate student Jim Jennings, research associate Daniela Rus, graduate student Russell Brown, and lab alumnus Jonathan Rees (now at MIT), we developed a team of autonomous mobile robots that can perform sophisticated distributed manipulation tasks (such as moving furniture). The robots run robust SPMD protocols that are completely asynchronous and require no communication. With graduate student Karl Böhringer, EE Professor Noel MacDonald, and postdoctoral associate Rob Mihailovich, we are building a massively parallel array of microactuators in the Cornell National Nanofabrication Laboratory. The array contains over 100 actuators in 1 square millimeter and can orient small parts without sensory feedback. Our microfabricated actuator arrays could be used to construct programmable parts-feeders (at any scale) or to build self-propelled IC's (walking VLSI chips). Graduate student Amy Briggs worked with Dan Huttenlocher's vision group to develop a sensor planning and surveillance system for a team of mobile robots. The robots use onboard vision to detect and intercept targets in the lab. Graduate student David Chang completed a new result intended to place computational topology on a firm algorithmic footing. We developed a randomized algorithm to compute the integral homology of a simplicial complex in expected quadratic time (in the geometric complexity).

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Last modified: 24 November 1995 by Denise Moore (