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Ayanna Howard

Ayanna Howard

American roboticist
Ayanna Howard
The basics

Quick Facts

Intro American roboticist
A.K.A. Эянна Говард, Эйанна Говард, Эйанна Хо...
Is Computer scientist Artificial intelligence researcher
From United States of America
Type Technology Science
Gender female
Birth 24 January 1972
Age 49 years
Star sign Aquarius
Ayanna Howard
The details (from wikipedia)


Ayanna MacCalla Howard (born January 24, 1972) is an African-American roboticist and the School Chair for Interactive Computing, Georgia Institute of Technology. She is also the Linda J. and Mark C. Smith Endowed Chair in Bioengineering in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, and the director of the Human-Automation Systems (HumAnS) Lab. Currently, she is the Chair of the School of Interactive Computing in the Georgia Tech College of Computing.

Early life and education

As a little girl Howard was interested in robots, and her favorite TV show was The Bionic Woman. Howard received her B.S. in Engineering from Brown University in 1993 and her M.S. and Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Southern California in 1994 and 1999, respectively. Her thesis Recursive Learning for Deformable Object Manipulation was advised by George A. Bekey.


Howard began her career working at the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory. In 2008 she received worldwide attention for her SnoMote robots, designed to study the impact of global warming on the Antarctic ice shelves. In 2013, she founded Zyrobotics, which has released their first suite of therapy and educational products for children with special needs. She has also served as the associate director of research for Georgia Tech’s Institute for Robotics and Intelligent Machines and as chair of the multidisciplinary robotics Ph.D. program at Georgia Tech. In 2017 she became the Chair of The School of Interactive Computing at Georgia Tech.


Howard's research interests include human-robot interaction, assistive/rehabilitation robotics, science-driven/field robotics, and perception, learning, and reasoning..

Howard's research and published works span across various topics in robotics and AI, including intelligent learning, virtual reality for rehabilitation and robotics in the role of pediatric therapy. Her research is highlighted by her focus on technology development for intelligent agents that must interact with and in a human-centered world. This work, which addresses issues of human-robot interaction, learning, and autonomous control, has resulted in more than 200 peer-reviewed publications.

Ayanna Howard
A team of iRobot Create robots at the GRITS Lab (joint with Magnus B. Egerstedt) for a sensor network research project.
Ayanna Howard

Honors and awards

Howard's numerous accomplishments have been documented in more than a dozen featured articles. In 2003, she was named to the MIT Technology Review TR100 as one of the top 100 innovators in the world under the age of 35. She was featured in TIME magazine’s "Rise of the Machines" article in 2004.. She was also featured in the USA Today Science & Space article.

A list of the most significant awards follows:

  • Lew Allen Award of Excellence (formerly the Director’s Research Achievement Award of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory) for significant technical contributions, 2001
  • MIT Technology Review Top 100 Young Innovators of the Year, 2003
  • NAE Gilbreth Lectureship, 2010
  • A. Richard Newton Educator ABIE Award, Anita Borg Institute, 2014
  • Computer Research Association’s A. Nico Habermann Award, 2016
  • Brown Engineering Alumni Medal (BEAM), 2016
  • AAAS-Lemelson Invention Ambassador, 2016-2017
  • Atlanta Magazine’s Women Making a Mark, 2017
  • Walker’s Legacy #WLPower25 Atlanta Award, 2017
  • Forbes America's Top 50 Women In Tech, 2018
The contents of this page are sourced from Wikipedia article on 26 Jul 2019. The contents are available under the CC BY-SA 4.0 license.
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