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CODE 86960
LANGUAGE Italian (English on demand)
SEMESTER 1° Semester


   This course aims at provining to the Master student basic and advanced concepts on the design of methods and techniques for data driven self-awareness in autonomous artificial agents . Signal Processing, Data Fusion and Machine learning under a Bayesian pespective will be the key dimensions on which introduced concepts will be described. Laboratory application and agent design will integrate course theoretical activities  



The goal of this module is to provide students with knowledge and capabilities for processing heterogeneous multisensory signals acquired by autonomous and semiautonomous systems, including human machine interaction. Machine learning methods will be addressed for estimating optimized Bayesian dynamic cognitive models in a data driven way. Capabilities of the students to produce new solutions based on such methods to state of the art problems will be addressed, together with acquisition of programming related capabilities by means of laboratory activities.


  Knowledge on methods and techniques for acquisition, joint  representaion and processing of proprioreceptive and exteroreceptive  multisensorial signals in cognitive dynamic agents (e.g. semi autonomous&autonomous vehicles like drones, cars, robots) cognitive radios,   etc.) 

- Knowledge on methods and techniques for Multisensor Data Fusion: coupled hierarchical processing of multisensorial signals. Machine learning for data driven driven experience based learning of Dynamic Generative Fusion models from sequences of multdimensional sensorial data.

- Knowledge on Machine Learning methods and techniques based on Cognitive Dynamic Systems theory for Situation awareness and Self awareness in artificial cognitive agents 

- Knowledge and capabilities on case studies: design of Self Awareness frameowrk for autonomous systems (dataset on cars robots and drones, cognitive radios) 

- Knowledge and capabilities to use and apply: multisensorial signal processing tools and algorithms for acquisition,  experience driven machine learning techniques for estimation of Generative multisensorial Bayesian  hierarchical models. Bayesian Inference on learned Generative Models for dynamic state estimation, prediction and anomaly detection  of interaction between agent and its contextual environment situation .


Probability theory, Random Processes, Signal theory 


The course is divided in two parts. Lectures in frontal teaching modality presented together with slides will aim at describing the theroretical concepts and the techniques. Such lectires will cover 40 hours and can be recorded and made available on those channels recommended by Univeristy of Genova. The second part is done within a laboratory carried on by an expert of the field and will involve application of programs in Matlab framework that correspond to theories and techniqeus shon at lectures. Students will be required to present a report at the end of each lab experience. 10 Lab experiences are planned and will help students to be prepared to present the final report to be discussed during the exam that will show application and discussion of techniques abnd results over a dataset assigned.. 


  • The module can be associated with Goals for Sustinable Development of ONU Agenda 2023 Nr. 4, 9 and 11
  • Cognitive Telecommunications Systems: an introduction 
  • Signal Processing and Cognitive Systems: Bio inspired models
  • Acquisition, representation and inference in Cognitive Dynamic systems 
  • Data fusion architectural models 
  • Data fusion levels and techniques 
    • Temporal and Spatial alignment
    • State estimation (Kalman filter,  Particle Filter, Switching models, Hierarchical filters)
    • Situation Awareness /Self awareness and Threat Assessment 
  • Probabilistic Graphical Models and Dynamic Bayesian Networks 
    • Attractors and Bayesian inference
    • DBNs as experiences models 
      • ​Haykin model 
      • Damasio models
      • Friston model 
  • Machine learning models for interaction modeling: 
    • Unsupervised and supervised clustering of big data
      • self Organizing Maps, Growing Neural Gas, Gaussian Processes, Dirichlet model
    • Mapping of learned models onto DBNs
    • Incremental learning of multiple models based on agent experiences abnormal situations

Applying knowledge and understanding in lab 

  • Basic language and tools inytroduction (matlab, C++, datasets used) I
  • Case studies: autonomous car, lego robots, drones and simulators. 
  • Applied Experiments using programming techniques and tools 
    • Filtering methods on data from dataset;
    • Single agent proprioreceptive and exteroceptive models 
    • Self awareness coupled interaction models.

Making Judgements:

  • Interactive and Cognitive Systems project oriented techniques
    • Case study identification
    • Interaction system goal identification  (entities, service, evaluation performances)
    • State of the art description
    • Project design: architectural and technique level
    • Slide presentation
  • Small team collaborative project definition; project management
  • Individuating Emerging techniques in Cognitive Telecommunications domain

Learning and communications skills:

  • Bibliographic search on scientific data bases (e.g. IEEEE Explore)

Conference style oral slide presentation 


 Basic: Class notes written  by the lecturer and made available through Internet 

- A. R. Damasio, Looking for Spinoza: Joy, Sorrow, and the Feeling Brain, 1st ed. Orlando: Harcourt, 2003. [Online]. Available:
- S. Haykin, Cognitive Dynamic Systems: Perception-action Cycle, Radar and Radio, ser. Cognitive Dynamic Systems: Perception–action Cycle, Radar, and Radio. Cambridge University Press, 2012.

- P. R. Lewis, M. Platzner, B. Rinner, J. Torresen, and X. Yao, Eds., Selfaware Computing Systems: An Engineering Approach. Springer, 2016.

- K. J. Friston, B. Sengupta, and G. Auletta, “Cognitive dynamics: From attractors to active inference,” Proceedings of the IEEE, vol. 102, no. 4, pp. 427–445, 2014. [Online]. Available:

- S. Haykin and J. M. Fuster, “On cognitive dynamic systems: Cognitive neuroscience and engineering learning from each other,” Proceedings of the IEEE, vol. 102, no. 3, pp. 608–628, 2014.






Exam is structured in a written plus an oral part

The written part consists of presentation of either a report or a poster describing a set of activities and results done by the student aiming at demonstrating nowledge and capabilities he acquired along lecures and lab attendance. In case the student selects to process assigned  dataset of the same type to the ones analyzed along lab experiences a report has to be presented.   Otherwise the student can select and propose autonomously a case of study of interest agreed with the professor. The case of study should be oriented to the design of an integrated processing system base on course techniques capable to analyze a generic dataset whose specifics come for the choice of the case of study itself.  A poster or a report can be presented in this case as written exams.

The dataset or case of study have to be assigned/agreed at least three weeks before oral exam date on the basisof student request.  In both cases  the written text proposed by the student will have to show that student has acquired knowledge and capabilities presented in the course. The written exam will have to be delivered at indicated online repository at least 4 days before oral exam. The outcome of the evaluation of the written exam will be communicated the day before the oral exam. 

Oral exam will consist of discussion of the written exam, The student will have to prepare max 20 slides to describe results and approaches presented in the written text.  Oral discussion will be oriented to demonstrate knowledge and capabilities to describe choices performed when developing report or poster, as well as to comment results and performances obtained/expected for the chosen problem.

The oral exam will be passed in case the student will be admitted to the oral with at least 12 over 20 AND if the outcome of the oral will be at least 6 over 10. Laude can be assigned during the oral part.   

Students with learning disorders ("disturbi specifici di apprendimento", DSA) will be allowed to use specific modalities and supports that will be determined on a case-by-case basis in agreement with the delegate of the Engineering courses in the Committee for the Inclusion of Students with Disabilities




Exam aims at assessing the following aspects about acquired student's knowldge and capabilities: 

Level of Knowledge acquired with respect to theories and methods presented in course lectures

Level of practical and integration capabilities with respect to either the assigned data analytics problem (in case of dataset processing choice) o the design and the specifications of the data analysis system (in case of case of study choice)  chosen for the written part of the exam.

Level of Capability and knowledge when motivating performed choices and obtained results during the oral discussion    



Dataset will be assigned at least two weeks before exam and report will have to be presented on Monday before exam date (usually on Thursday)  Oral admission will be communicated a day before oral exam. 

Agenda 2030 - Sustainable Development Goals

Agenda 2030 - Sustainable Development Goals
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Quality education
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Decent work and economic growth
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