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Sebastian Blaes


Postdoctoral Researcher in the Autonomous Learning Group at the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems, Tuebingen.


Cycling, running, trekking, mountaineering enthusiast.


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Sebastian Blaes

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Research

Reinforcement Learning for Robotics / Robotics for Sustainable Agriculture

Postdoc

2023 – present

Max-Planck-Institute for Intelligent Systems (Autonomous Learning Group / Robust Machine Learning Group)

Nature-Inspired Inductive Biases in Learning Robots

PhD Research

2022

Max-Planck-Institute for Intelligent Systems (Autonomous Learning Group)

Deep Convolutional Networks for Visual Object Recognition:
Few-Shot Learning of New Categories

Graduate Research

2017

Frankfurt Institute for Advanced Studies (Burwick Lab)

Attentional Selection and Suppression Mechanism
in an Oscillatory Neural Network Model

Graduate Research

2015

Frankfurt Institute for Advanced Studies (Burwick Lab)

Plasma Confinement of the Weibel Type

Undergraduate Research

2012

Goethe University (Institute for Applied Physics)

Education

PhD in Computer Science

MPI for Intelligent Systems, Tübingen, GER

2017 - 2022

Coursework:

  • Seminar: AI, Science, Society, Responsibility
  • Machine Learning: Algorithms and Theory
  • Probabilistic Inference

MSc in Computer Science

Goethe University, Frankfurt, GER

2013 - 2017

With Distinction

Coursework:

  • Approximation Algorithms
  • Semantics and Analysis of Functional Programming Languages
  • Operating Systems
  • Theoretical Computer Science

MSc in Physics

Goethe University, Frankfurt, GER

2012 - 2015

With Distinction

Coursework:

  • Theoretical Neuroscience
  • Computational Neuroscience
  • Quantum Computing and Information Theory
  • Machine Learning
  • Electronics and Sensors
  • Digital Electronics

BSc in Physics

Goethe University, Frankfurt, GER

2008 - 2012

Coursework:

  • Brain Dynamics: From Neuron to Cortex
  • Plasma Physics
  • Visual Systems: Principles of Attention

Publications

Journals

  • S.Blaes and T.Burwick, Few-Shot Learning in Deep Networks through Global Prototyping, Neural Networks, 94 (2017) 159-172
  • S.Blaes and T.Burwick, Attentional Bias through Oscillatory Coherence between Excitatory Activity and Inhibitory Minima, Neural Computation, 27 (2015) 1405--1437
  • Teske, C., Y. Liu, S. Blaes and J. Jacoby, Electron Density and Plasma Dynamics of a Spherical Theta Pinch, Physics of Plamsas, (1994-present) 19, no. 3 (2012): 033505

Conferences

  • Li, C., Vlastelica, M., Blaes, S., Frey, J., Grimminger, F., Martius, G., Learning Agile Skills via Adversarial Imitation of Rough Partial Demonstrations, Conference on Robot Learning (CoRL), 2022,
  • Sancaktar, C., Blaes, S., Martius, G., Curious Exploration via Structured World Models Yields Zero-Shot Object Manipulation, Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NeurIPS), 2022,
  • Vlastelica*, M., Blaes*, S., Pinneri, C., Martius, G., Risk-Averse Zero-Order Trajectory Optimization, Conference on Robot Learning (CoRL), 2021, *Equal Contribution,
  • Pinneri, C., Sawant, S., Blaes, S., Martius, G., Extracting Strong Policies for Robotics Tasks from Zero-order Trajectory Optimizers, International Conference on Learning Representations (ICLR), 2021,
  • Cristina Pinneri, Shambhuraj Sawant, Sebastian Blaes, Jan Achterhold, Jörg Stückler, Michal Rolinek, Georg Martius, Sample-efficient Cross-Entropy Method for Real-time Planning, Conference on Robot Learning (CoRL), 2020,
  • Blaes, S., Vlastelica, M., Zhu, J., Martius, G., Control What You Can: Intrinsically Motivated Task-Planning Agent , Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NeurIPS), 2019,
  • M.Mundt, S. Blaes and T. Burwick, Feature Binding in Deep Convolution Networks with Recurrences, Oscillations and Top-Down Modulated Dynamics, European Symposium on Artificial Neural Networks (ESANN), 2016,

Honors, Awards, Scholarships

  • Scholar of the International Max Planck Research School (IMPRS) for Intelligent Systems (IS)

Experience

Reviewer

  • NeurIP'21
  • ICLR'22

Teaching Assistant

  • Reinforcement Learning (University Tuebingen, 2018, 2020/2021)
  • Introduction to Programming I (C++) (Goethe University, 2014 - 2016)
  • Introduction to Programming II (Functional Programming, Databases) (Goethe University, 2014 - 2016)
  • Theoretical Computer Science I (Algorithm Engineering and Analysis) (Goethe University, 2014 - 2016)

Workshop Instructor

MPI-IS Tuebingen

  • Tübingen Robust Learning Symposium (2020)
  • One day Workshop on Machine Learning at Leipzig University, GER (2018)

Lab Instructor

Goethe University

2012 - 2014

  • Lab Experiments: Electricity and Magnetism

IT Assistant

Wachendorf Elektronik GmbH & Co. KG

2004 - 2006

  • PHP Programming
  • IT Support

Training

  • Transylvanian Machine Learning Summer School (TMLSS) (2018)
  • Deep Learning and Reinforcement Learning Summer School by Vector Institute (2018)

Media

Introduction of the "Autonomous Learning" group at the Max-Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems, Tübingen

Promotional movie for the german state of Baden-Württemberg. Starring Poppy and me as the operator.

© 2022 Sebastian Blaes. All rights reserved.