Dr Charles Gretton

PhD in Computer Science
ANU TechLauncher Program Convener
College of Engineering & Computer Science
T: +61 2 61254001

Areas of expertise

  • Artificial Intelligence And Image Processing 0801
  • Decision Theory 220302
  • Logic 220308
  • Adaptive Agents And Intelligent Robotics 080101

Research interests

I am a computer scientist who works in a sub-field of Artificial Intelligence called Automated Planning. Although my interests extend to other subjects in Machine Learning and Automated Reasoning, my expertise lies mostly within planning. I study and develop AI technologies that enable machines to reason about deliberations in the world, and to reason about how to extend their knowledge about the world intelligently. Subjects where I have published works include: state-based heuristic planning with continuous time (TIL-Relaxed Heuristic), exploiting sub-problem symmetries -- 'descriptive quotient', computing plan-length upper bounds -- 'sublist diameter', mixed decision-theoretic and sequential planning for robot control acting in large, complex, real-world environments featuring task and observation objectives -- ''Switching", scalable and efficient representations of transition system models in SAT -- 'Precisely Split Representations', cost-optimal deterministic planning using Weighted MAXSAT -- 'COPLAN', stochastic local search (SLS)  procedures for Boolean SAT(isfiability) -- 'gNovelty+', SLS for Vertex Cover -- 'COver Edges Ramdomly', decision-theoretic planning and (relational-)reinforcement learning with non-Markovian rewards -- various Linear Temporal Logics. I've also done published research on aesthetic criteria in solving vehicle routing problems, game-theoretic cost allocations in logistics, and explorations of connectionist machine learning for synthesising aspects of Australian rules football (AFL) games. 

Industrial application areas I worked in include transportation of fast moving consumer goods, fleet and route optimisation, product stocking policies, pricing, and SKU recommendation. 



Since 2018 I have been convening the much celebrated and loved TechLauncher program at the Australian National University. That program comprises 35 teams of students working collaboratively and professionally together to: (i) create and leverage technology innovations to build and scale new enterprises, or (ii) fulfil statements of work and build relationships with business, industry, and government organisations in the Canberra region and around the world. I also lead projects on scaling logical inference with commonwealth government organisations, actively contribute to projects in the aerospace and astronomy domains, and occasionally collaborate with artist to expose and celebrate the clockwork orange in fashionable machine learning paradigms. In mid 2015 I co-founded Red Analytics PTY LTD (a.k.a. HIVERY), a Data61 spinout supported by the coca-cola founders platform. I was a senior researcher with the Data61 (NICTA) lab in Canberra from August of 2011. Prior to that I was a research fellow with the Intelligent Robotics Lab at the University of Birmingham 2008-2011; There I worked on a project investigating cognitive robots that could self-understand and self-extend. I was a researcher with the NICTA lab in Brisbane 2006-2008; There, I worked on fundamental research in AI Search, and simulation studies of city wide evacuation planning. I have also held adjunct positions at Griffith University since 2006. I am the primary author of NRMDPP, runner up in the probabilistic track of the 2004 International Planning Competition. I am a co-author of gNovelty+, winner of the "Random" category at the 2007 International SAT competition.


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Updated:  26 June 2022 / Responsible Officer:  Director (Research Services Division) / Page Contact:  Researchers