Foundations Of Cognitive Science


SLAM stands for simultaneous localization and mapping (Jeffries & Yeap, 2008; Milford, 2008). It is an important and difficult topic in the study of autonomous robots that are exploring and learning about a new environment. Many roboticists believe that the exploration of a novel environment requires two processes: first, the construction of a cognitive map of the environment, and second, the identification of the robot’s location on the map. Successful navigation is thought to require that these two processes happen simultaneously. While SLAM is a central topic in robotics research, it should be noted that some roboticists have developed navigational robots that simply react to their environment, and can navigate through it without requiring simultaneous localization and mapping (Nolfi, 2002).


  1. Jefferies, M. E., & Yeap, W. K. (2008). Robotics And Cognitive Approaches To Spatial Mapping. Berlin ; New York: Springer.
  2. Milford, M. J. (2008). Robot Navigation From Nature. Berlin: Springer.
  3. Nolfi, S. (2002). Power and limits of reactive agents. Neurocomputing, 42, 119-145.

(Added January 2010)