Inside the robot is a model of the human brain

The team with a special interest in developing the social robot’s brain focuses on its cognitive functions rather than the brain’s physiology. The group works on the abilities of the robot to simulate emotions, do moral reasoning, provide creative solutions, and have an understanding of the user’s beliefs and worldview. The software we develop is open source (license to be determined) and can be downloaded from the Robot Brain Server to make your machine behave more human-like:

Silicon Coppélia – Emotion simulation that works from the goals and concerns that the system has, also capable of moral reasoning

ACASIA – Feature-matching system for creative combination making, deriving its features from Deep Learning algorithms

Epistemics of the Virtual – Self-updating database with world knowledge, capable of distinguishing fiction from reality, metaphor recognition, logical verification, and empirical validation

LEIA – Markov-chains based learning system, employing Interaction History Tree Models and working from the Minimum Description Length principle.

If you feel you can contribute or that we need an extra line of inquiry and development: Be happy to join in!




Johan F. Hoorn, VU University Amsterdam
Thomas Baier, Luminis
Marcel Offermans, Luminis
Jeroen Wester, Wieswies Information Technology and Services
Henri Zwols, ProfIT Consulting
Ronald Siebes, Webscience
Jeroen van Maanen, Sollunae
Tibor Bosse, VU University Amsterdam


Hoorn, J. F. (2015). Machine medical ethics when a human is delusive but the android has its wits about him. In S. P. Van Rysewyk, & M. A. Pontier (Eds.), Machine medical ethics, vol. 3 (pp. 233-254). Intelligent Systems, Control and Automation: Science and Engineering, 74. Berlin, Heidelberg, GE: Springer. doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-08108-3_15. Available at:

Hoorn, J. F. (2014). Creative confluence. Amsterdam, Philadelphia, PA: John Benjamins. Available at:

Hoorn, J. F. (Ed.) (2013). Organic creativity and the physics within. Amsterdam, Philadelphia, PA: John Benjamins. Available at:

Hoorn, J. F. (2012). Epistemics of the virtual. Amsterdam, Philadelphia, PA: John Benjamins. Available at:

Hoorn, J. F., Pontier, M. A., & Siddiqui, G. F., (2012). Coppélius’ concoction: Similarity and complementarity among three affect-related agent models. Cognitive Systems Research, 15-16, 33-49. doi: 10.1016/j.cogsys.2011.04.001


Hoorn, J. F., Baier, T., Offermans, M., & Wester, J. (2015). Silicon Coppélia Applet [Plug-in]. VU University Amsterdam, Luminis BV. Available under: License.

Hoorn, J. F., & Siebes, R. (2015). ACASIA Applet [Plug-in]. VU University Amsterdam, Webscience. Available under: License.

Hoorn, J. F., & Zwols, H. (2015). Epistemics of the Virtual Applet [Plug-in]. VU University Amsterdam, ProfIT BV. Available under: License.

Van Maanen, J. (2015). LEIA Applet [Plug-in]. Sollunae. Available under: License.