Student project suggestions
Aaron Sloman

I retired in 2002 and am now an Honorary professor of Artificial Intelligence and Cognitive Science, doing full time research on problems linking AI, vision, mathematical discovery, philosophy, and evolution.

You can find an overview of my main current research topic, the Turing-inspired Meta-Morphogenesis project, here:
It has many sub-problems that are likely to remain unsolved for years to come.

My main web page with more information about me is here:

Previous work on the Cognition and Affect project, exploring biologically plausible architectures for intelligent agents (and capable in principle of explaining affective states and processes, including desires, preferences, values, anger, fear, etc.) can be found here:

I am no longer involved in teaching and therefore will not normally be supervising student projects, though I am prepared to consider proposals from students who have an idea that is closely related to my interests.

If the project involves programming, it should be AI programming (e.g. using Pop11 and the SimAgent toolkit , or something closely related).

If you have a relevant idea you can try to persuade me to supervise you. Since I do a lot of work at home, please email me at if you wish to meet and talk (in room UG34, which I share with two other researchers).

I would be willing to consider supervising a very bright student (with first class grades) who has had practical experience of ARM machine code, and compiler design, and who knows pop11, and who would be interested in a project to port Poplog to ARM+linux, so that it could be run on a RaspberryPi, for example. This might be too much for one student. A team of two or three students dividing the work might be better. If two or more students are involved, part of the project might be updating the Poplog AI teaching files, some of which are linked here:
For video tutorials see:


Because of the nature of my job here (research professor) my time available for teaching is limited. Consequently any student supervised by me will have to be very self-sufficient and able to use me mainly as a person on whom to try out ideas rather than a teacher who will be available all the time to give advice and help. (I'll try to answer email enquiries, however.)

Moreover, I am unwilling to supervise projects based on programming languages on which I am not an expert, since otherwise I will not be able to give good advice, and help with debugging will take far more time and effort.

That means I normally expect students supervised by me to use Pop11, which I know very well or perhaps Prolog which I don't know so well, or maybe Lisp, which I know a little.

In particular I don't want to supervise projects based on languages that were not designed specifically to support AI, as I think they make the tasks too difficult, and constrain what can be achieved.

The Poplog system which contains several AI languages and the SimAgent toolkit is now available free of charge from here:
The latest version, for linux, is here:

Some of my current activities are described in these web pages:
More on the CogAff Project, including papers
(Probably out of date now!)

and many of my recent research papers can be found here

And recent research presentations, at conferences, etc. here:

If you browse these files you'll get some idea of my expertise and interests. There are also many suggestions for possible topics listed in online TEACH files, accessible from VED, e.g. TEACH PROJECTS (though many of those would be too elementary for a final year or MSc project.)

I do not wish to supervise projects involving neural nets or evolutionary computation (e.g. Genetic Algorithms), since I don't know enough about them to give good advice on technical details, and I am probably not a good person to supervise projects involving evolutionary computation. I am willing to consider other sorts of evolutionary investigations.

File Maintained by Aaron Sloman

Last updated: 21 Apr 2005; 13 Feb 2015