Orchid Project

The ORCHID Project


As computation increasingly pervades the world around us, it will profoundly change the ways in which we work with computers. Rather than issuing instructions to passive machines, humans and software agents will continually and flexibly establish a range of collaborative relationships with one another, forming human-agent collectives (HACs) to meet their individual and collective goals.

This vision of people and computational agents operating at a global scale offers tremendous potential and, if realised correctly, will help us meet the key societal challenges of sustainability, inclusion, and safety that are core to our future.

To fully realise this vision, we require a principled science that allows us to reason about the computational and human aspects of these systems. Delivering this science is the core research objective of ORCHID. Specifically, we seek to establish the science that is needed to understand, build and apply HACs that symbiotically interleave human and computer systems to an unprecedented degree. With multi-disciplinary expertise in the areas of artificial intelligence, agent-based computing, machine learning, decentralised information systems, crowd sourcing, participatory systems, and ubiquitous computing, the ORCHID team aims to drive the science of HACs to real-world applications in the critical domains of the smart grid, disaster response and citizen science.

Latest News

  • Nov 13

    Buildsys 2014 Best demo
    The Buildsys 2014 best demo was awarded to Jack Kelly, Nipun Batra, Oliver Parson et al for NILMTK v0.2: A Non-intrusive Load Monitoring Toolkit for Large Scale Data Sets. The toolkit is on line at http://nbviewer.ipython.org/github/nilmtk/nilmtk/blob/master/notebooks/BuildSys_2014_demo.ipynb.
  • Oct 15

    University Researchers partner with Fantasy Football Site to launch RateMyTeam Tool
    In 2012, data scientists from the University of Southampton, UK, developed an algorithm that could beat 2M human players at the Fantasy Premier League. Two years on, they are now launching the RateMyTeam tool that allows all football fans around the world to use the algorithm to improve their team. This effort was led by […]
  • Sep 03

    Research finds crowdsourcing is vulnerable to malicious behaviour
    Researchers from the University of Southampton and the National Information and Communications Technology Australia (NICTA) found that a significant feature of crowdsourcing — its openness of entry — makes it vulnerable to malicious behaviour.
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Doctoral Training Programme

Offering fully funded scholarships to eligible applicants interested in building the next generation of intelligent information systems.

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Disaster response

We are developing systems that allow first responders, unmanned ground and aerial vehicles, and software agents to work effectively together.

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Smart Grid

We are developing novel algorithms and interfaces to optimise energy consumption and coordinate consumers and producers in the smart grid.

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Citizen Science

We are developing approaches that make full use of the skills, preferences and capabilities of citizen scientists.

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