Marco Combetto

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Marcomb @ VVV 06

Shado.jpg Marco69.jpg

Hallo this is the Marco's home page at VVV 06


I'm italian, I get a BS/MS in Computer Science (Image Processing) from University of Turin and a MS in telecom technologies from COREP (Politecnico of Turin) and SSGRR. I started as researcher in Telecom Italia Lab in 1994 and I joined Microsoft Italy in the 1997 (in the Consultance Services Division). From the 2003 I'm working for Microsoft Research in the External Research Office [1]

I'm doing my Phd in the HCI Lab, Computer Science Dept, University of Udine (Italy) [2], under the supervision of Prof. Luca Chittaro. My Phd is about investigation on use of wearable sensors and mobile devices to detect "embodiment" [3], in particular to detect/use/leverage emotional/affective states. I work with bio data (as heat flux, heartbeat, blood oxygen, skin conductivity), with mobile information (GPS, bluetooth presence, WiFi localization, SMS/MMS/Emails, Voice Notes, Pictures and video). I'm interested in mobile social habits (so I collaborate with social scientist, etnhographers, interaction Designers, P) We try to stimulate what is referred as "Affective Loop" (see picture)


Main projects on going

Affective Diary


BackSeat Playgrounds



From a software point of view the problem I'm facing in my Phd is not so far from the robotics scenarios (many sensors, computing data from them, loosely coupled, getting the right context, interacting with humans)

So I'm interested in distributed software architectures that could enable this and the group I'm working in in MSR Cambridge just started to look at something in the so-called Human-Robotics Interaction. I have links with the MS Redmond Robotics Group. I have a collaboration on going with University of Pisa, a project called Robotics4.Net where we are investigating on usage of intermediate-language based (VM based) frameworks, C# in particular (reflection, annotated language, meta-programming). We are looking for a programming model that could be better that a simple set of API and give an high level view of the embodiment and be platform independent. In this project we are inspired by the human nervous system, so we defined etities called Roblets, a Bodymap that buffer the state of the body and simple brains (applications). I'm interested in looking for new ways to manage the massive concurrency problem we have in these systems, so how to semplify the developement and debugging (and deployment) of software systems composed by many different process running? How to make this in a safe way (safe for human too!)


This project developed with the Computer Science Dept. of Univeristy of Pisa (italy), is linked somehow with on going development in Microsoft, and quite soon we will have R4N library and runtime running on top of the communication layer provided by the just released MS Robotics Studio runtime.

We have other collaboration goin on, but just started so it is to early to say something about it.

My research group is part of EURON [4] and of EUROP [5]

I'm the organizer of the ICEC 2006 conference [6]

Why I'm here at VVV 06

Learning something new, improve my terrible C++ programming skills, looking at an interesting project like Robocub that seems very promising, compare different and similar approaches in building the software for robotics, relax a little bit in this wonderful place and talking with people that is expert omn the field.


More information about me (MSR Home Page): [7] More Information about HCI Lab in Udine: [8] More information about Robotics4Net: [9] More Information about MSR ERO in Cambridge (UK): [10] More information about MS Robotics: [11]