Daniel N. Nikovski

Daniel N. Nikovski
  • Biography

    Dan's research is focused on algorithms for reasoning, planning, and learning with probabilistic models. His current work is on the application of such algorithms to hard transportation problems such as group elevator control and traffic prediction. He also has varied interests in the field of data mining.

  • Recent News & Events

    •  NEWS   New robotics benchmark system
      Date: November 16, 2020
      MERL Contacts: Devesh K. Jha; Daniel N. Nikovski; Diego Romeres; Alan Sullivan
      Research Areas: Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Robotics
      Brief
      • MERL researchers, in collaboration with researchers from MELCO and the Department of Brain and Cognitive Science at MIT, have released simulation software Circular Maze Environment (CME). This system could be used as a new benchmark for evaluating different control and robot learning algorithms. The control objective in this system is to tip and the tilt the maze so as to drive one (or multiple) marble(s) to the innermost ring of the circular maze. Although the system is very intuitive for humans to control, it is very challenging for artificial intelligence agents to learn efficiently. It poses several challenges for both model-based as well as model-free methods, due to its non-smooth dynamics, long planning horizon, and non-linear dynamics. The released Python package provides the simulation environment for the circular maze, where movement of multiple marbles could be simulated simultaneously. The package also provides a trajectory optimization algorithm to design a model-based controller in simulation.
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    •  NEWS   MERL researchers presenting three papers at ICML 2020
      Date: July 12, 2020 - July 18, 2020
      Where: Vienna, Austria (virtual this year)
      MERL Contacts: Mouhacine Benosman; Anoop Cherian; Devesh K. Jha; Daniel N. Nikovski
      Research Areas: Artificial Intelligence, Computer Vision, Data Analytics, Dynamical Systems, Machine Learning, Optimization, Robotics
      Brief
      • MERL researchers are presenting three papers at the International Conference on Machine Learning (ICML 2020), which is virtually held this year from 12-18th July. ICML is one of the top-tier conferences in machine learning with an acceptance rate of 22%. The MERL papers are:

        1) "Finite-time convergence in Continuous-Time Optimization" by Orlando Romero and Mouhacine Benosman.

        2) "Can Increasing Input Dimensionality Improve Deep Reinforcement Learning?" by Kei Ota, Tomoaki Oiki, Devesh Jha, Toshisada Mariyama, and Daniel Nikovski.

        3) "Representation Learning Using Adversarially-Contrastive Optimal Transport" by Anoop Cherian and Shuchin Aeron.
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  • Awards

    •  AWARD   Daniel Nikovski receives Outstanding Reviewer Award at NeurIPS'21
      Date: October 18, 2021
      Awarded to: Daniel Nikovski
      MERL Contact: Daniel N. Nikovski
      Research Areas: Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning
      Brief
      • Daniel Nikovski, Group Manager of MERL's Data Analytics group, has received an Outstanding Reviewer Award from the 2021 conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NeurIPS'21). NeurIPS is the world's premier conference on neural networks and related technologies.
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    •  AWARD   Best conference paper of IEEE PES-GM 2020
      Date: June 18, 2020
      Awarded to: Tong Huang, Hongbo Sun, K.J. Kim, Daniel Nikovski, Le Xie
      MERL Contacts: Kyeong Jin (K.J.) Kim; Daniel N. Nikovski; Hongbo Sun
      Research Areas: Data Analytics, Electric Systems, Optimization
      Brief
      • A paper on A Holistic Framework for Parameter Coordination of Interconnected Microgrids Against Natural Disasters, written by Tong Huang, a former MERL intern from Texas A&M University, has been selected as one of the Best Conference Papers at the 2020 Power and Energy Society General Meeting (PES-GM). IEEE PES-GM is the flagship conference for the IEEE Power and Energy Society. The work was done in collaboration with Hongbo Sun, K. J. Kim, and Daniel Nikovski from MERL, and Tong's advisor, Prof. Le Xie from Texas A&M University.
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    •  AWARD   Best Student Paper Award at the International Conference on Data Mining
      Date: November 30, 2017
      Awarded to: Yan Zhu, Makoto Imamura, Daniel Nikovski, Eamonn Keogh
      MERL Contact: Daniel N. Nikovski
      Research Area: Data Analytics
      Brief
      • Yan Zhu, a former MERL intern from the University of California at Riverside has won the Best Student Paper Award at the International Conference on Data Mining in 2017, for her work on time series chains, a novel primitive for time series analysis. The work was done in collaboration with Makoto Imamura, formerly at Information Technology Center/AI Department, and currently a professor at Tokai University in Tokyo, Japan, Daniel Nikovski from MERL, and Yan's advisor, Prof. Eamonn Keogh from UC Riverside, whose lab has had a long and fruitful collaboration with MERL and Mitsubishi Electric.
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    •  AWARD   SICE 2008 Best Paper Award
      Date: July 1, 2008
      Awarded to: Nishiuma, N.; Goto, Y.; Kumazawa, H.; Komaya K.; Nikovski, D. and Brand, M.
      Awarded for: "Travel Time Prediction using Singular Value Decomposition"
      Awarded by: Journal of the Society of Instrument and Control Engineers of Japan
      MERL Contacts: Daniel N. Nikovski; Norihiro Nishiuma
      Research Area: Data Analytics
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  • Internships with Daniel

    • DA1677: Machine Learning Algorithms for Sequence Prediction

      MERL is looking for a highly motivated and qualified candidate to work on machine learning algorithms for prediction of spatiotemporal data represented as time series of geospatial locations. The ideal candidate will have solid understanding of sequence prediction algorithms, including transformer neural networks, recurrent neural networks, and other deep neural network models, as well as good foundational knowledge of discrete event systems, including Markov and semi-Markov models. Demonstrated hands-on experience with PyTorch or other Python implementations of such algorithms is required. Additional knowledge of time series analysis and statistical machine learning, as well as experience with tools and methods for geospatial processing would be a plus. PhD students are preferred, but Master's students will be considered, too. The expected duration of the internship is 3-4 months. This internship is preferred to be onsite at MERL, but may be done remotely where you live if the COVID pandemic makes it necessary.

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  • MERL Publications

    •  Sun, H., Kawano, S., Nikovski, D.N., Takano, T., Mori, K., "Distribution system fault location analysis using graph neural network with node and link attributes", IEEE PES Innovative Smart Grid Technologies Conference - Europe (ISGT Europe), October 2021.
      BibTeX TR2021-130 PDF
      • @inproceedings{Sun2021oct,
      • author = {Sun, Hongbo and Kawano, Shunsuke and Nikovski, Daniel N. and Takano, Tomihiro and Mori, Kazuyuki},
      • title = {Distribution system fault location analysis using graph neural network with node and link attributes},
      • booktitle = {IEEE PES Innovative Smart Grid Technologies Conference - Europe (ISGT Europe)},
      • year = 2021,
      • month = oct,
      • url = {https://www.merl.com/publications/TR2021-130}
      • }
    •  Wang, S., Sun, H., Kim, K.J., Guo, J., Nikovski, D.N., "Solving Bernoulli Bandit Problems for Weather-relative Overhead Distribution Line Failures Forecasting", IEEE PES GM, July 2021.
      BibTeX TR2021-087 PDF
      • @inproceedings{Wang2021jul2,
      • author = {Wang, Shengyi and Sun, Hongbo and Kim, Kyeong Jin and Guo, Jianlin and Nikovski, Daniel N.},
      • title = {Solving Bernoulli Bandit Problems for Weather-relative Overhead Distribution Line Failures Forecasting},
      • booktitle = {IEEE PES GM},
      • year = 2021,
      • month = jul,
      • url = {https://www.merl.com/publications/TR2021-087}
      • }
    •  Dalla Libera, A., Amadio, F., Nikovski, D.N., Carli, R., Romeres, D., "Control of Mechanical Systems via Feedback Linearization Based on Black-Box Gaussian Process Models", European Control Conference (ECC), June 2021.
      BibTeX TR2021-068 PDF
      • @inproceedings{DallaLibera2021jun,
      • author = {Dalla Libera, Alberto and Amadio, Fabio and Nikovski, Daniel N. and Carli, Ruggero and Romeres, Diego},
      • title = {Control of Mechanical Systems via Feedback Linearization Based on Black-Box Gaussian Process Models},
      • booktitle = {European Control Conference (ECC)},
      • year = 2021,
      • month = jun,
      • url = {https://www.merl.com/publications/TR2021-068}
      • }
    •  Dong, S., Jha, D.K., Romeres, D., Kim, S., Nikovski, D.N., Rodriguez, A., "Tactile-RL for Insertion: Generalization to Objects of Unknown Geometry", IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), May 2021.
      BibTeX TR2021-052 PDF
      • @inproceedings{Dong2021may,
      • author = {Dong, Siyuan and Jha, Devesh K. and Romeres, Diego and Kim, Sangwoon and Nikovski, Daniel N. and Rodriguez, Alberto},
      • title = {Tactile-RL for Insertion: Generalization to Objects of Unknown Geometry},
      • booktitle = {IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA)},
      • year = 2021,
      • month = may,
      • url = {https://www.merl.com/publications/TR2021-052}
      • }
    •  Laftchiev, E., Romeres, D., Nikovski, D.N., "Dynamic Thermal Comfort Optimization for Groups", American Control Conference (ACC), DOI: 10.23919/​ACC50511.2021.9483191, May 2021.
      BibTeX TR2021-057 PDF
      • @inproceedings{Laftchiev2021may,
      • author = {Laftchiev, Emil and Romeres, Diego and Nikovski, Daniel N.},
      • title = {Dynamic Thermal Comfort Optimization for Groups},
      • booktitle = {American Control Conference (ACC)},
      • year = 2021,
      • month = may,
      • publisher = {IEEE},
      • doi = {10.23919/ACC50511.2021.9483191},
      • issn = {2378-5861},
      • isbn = {978-1-6654-4197-1},
      • url = {https://www.merl.com/publications/TR2021-057}
      • }
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  • Software Downloads

  • Videos

  • MERL Issued Patents

    • Title: "Predictive Classification of Future Operations"
      Inventors: Jha, Devesh; Zhang, Wenyu; Laftchiev, Emil; Nikovski, Daniel N.
      Patent No.: 10,996,664
      Issue Date: May 4, 2021
    • Title: "Methods and Systems of Random Projection Filter Banks for Time Series Prediction and Fault Prognosis"
      Inventors: Farahmand, Amir massoud; Nikovski, Daniel N.
      Patent No.: 10,729,382
      Issue Date: Aug 4, 2020
    • Title: "Methods and Systems for Discovery of Prognostic Subsequences in Time Series"
      Inventors: Nikovski, Daniel N.; Zhu, Yan; Farahmand, Amir massoud
      Patent No.: 10,712,733
      Issue Date: Jul 14, 2020
    • Title: "Optimizing Operations of Multiple Air-Conditioning Units"
      Inventors: Raghunathan, Arvind U; Nikovski, Daniel N.
      Patent No.: 10,161,649
      Issue Date: Dec 25, 2018
    • Title: "System and Method for Group Elevator Scheduling Based on Submodular Optimization"
      Inventors: Nikovski, Daniel N.; Raghunathan, Arvind U; Ramalingam, Srikumar
      Patent No.: 10,118,796
      Issue Date: Nov 6, 2018
    • Title: "Method for Anomaly Detection in Time Series Data Based on Spectral Partitioning"
      Inventors: Nikovski, Daniel N.; Kniazev, Andrei; Jones, Michael J.
      Patent No.: 9,984,334
      Issue Date: May 29, 2018
    • Title: "Model Predictive Control with Uncertainties"
      Inventors: Nikovski, Daniel N.; Di Cairano, Stefano; Zhao, Yiming
      Patent No.: 9,946,241
      Issue Date: Apr 17, 2018
    • Title: "Method for Detecting Power Theft in a Power Distribution System"
      Inventors: Nikovski, Daniel N.; Wang, Zhenhua
      Patent No.: 9,945,889
      Issue Date: Apr 17, 2018
    • Title: "Method and System for Scheduling Elevator Cars in a Group Elevator System with Uncertain Information about Arrivals of Future Passengers"
      Inventors: Nikovski, Daniel N.
      Patent No.: 9,834,405
      Issue Date: Dec 5, 2017
    • Title: "Method for Learning Exemplars for Anomaly Detection"
      Inventors: Jones, Michael J.; Nikovski, Daniel N.
      Patent No.: 9,779,361
      Issue Date: Oct 3, 2017
    • Title: "Method and System for Selecting Power Sources in Hybrid Electric Vehicles"
      Inventors: Nikovski, Daniel N.; Farahmand, Amir massoud
      Patent No.: 9,637,111
      Issue Date: May 2, 2017
    • Title: "Actions Prediction for Hypothetical Driving Conditions"
      Inventors: Harsham, Bret A.; Hershey, John R.; Le Roux, Jonathan; Nikovski, Daniel N.; Esenther, Alan W.
      Patent No.: 9,434,389
      Issue Date: Sep 6, 2016
    • Title: "Method and System for Autonomously Delivering Information to Drivers"
      Inventors: Nikovski, Daniel N.; Harsham, Bret A.; Hershey, John R.; Brinkman, Dirk
      Patent No.: 9,305,306
      Issue Date: Apr 5, 2016
    • Title: "System and Method for Optimal Power Flow Analysis"
      Inventors: Raghunathan, Arvind U; Nikovski, Daniel N.; Gopalakrishnan, Ajit
      Patent No.: 9,280,744
      Issue Date: Mar 8, 2016
    • Title: "Method for Optimizing Power Flows in Electric Power Networks"
      Inventors: Raghunathan, Arvind U; Gopalakrishnan, Ajit; Nikovski, Daniel N.
      Patent No.: 9,184,589
      Issue Date: Nov 10, 2015
    • Title: "Method and System for Dynamically Adapting user Interfaces in Vehicle Navigation Systems to Minimize Interaction Complexity"
      Inventors: Nikovski, Daniel N.; Hershey, John R.; Harsham, Bret A.; Le Roux, Jonathan
      Patent No.: 9,170,119
      Issue Date: Oct 27, 2015
    • Title: "Method for Predicting Future Travel Time Using Geospatial Inference"
      Inventors: Jones, Michael J.; Nikovski, Daniel N.; Geng, Yanfeng
      Patent No.: 9,122,987
      Issue Date: Sep 1, 2015
    • Title: "Method for Globally Optimizing Power Flows in Electric Networks"
      Inventors: Raghunathan, Arvind U; Nikovski, Daniel N.
      Patent No.: 9,093,842
      Issue Date: Jul 28, 2015
    • Title: "Method for Detecting Anomalies in Multivariate Time Series Data"
      Inventors: Nikovski, Daniel N.; Jones, Michael J.
      Patent No.: 9,075,713
      Issue Date: Jul 7, 2015
    • Title: "Method for Scheduling Power Generators Based on Optimal Configurations and Approximate Dynamic Programming"
      Inventors: Nikovski, Daniel N.; Zhang, Weihong
      Patent No.: 8,996,185
      Issue Date: Mar 31, 2015
    • Title: "Method for Operating Building Climate Control System Using Integrated Temperature and Humidity Models"
      Inventors: Xu, Jingyang; Nikovski, Daniel N.
      Patent No.: 8,958,921
      Issue Date: Feb 17, 2015
    • Title: "Method for Predicting Outputs of Photovoltaic Devices Based on Two-Dimensional Fourier Analysis and Seasonal Auto-Regression"
      Inventors: Zhang, Weihong; Nikovski, Daniel N.
      Patent No.: 8,942,959
      Issue Date: Jan 27, 2015
    • Title: "Method for Optimizing Run Curve of Vehicles"
      Inventors: Nikovski, Daniel N.; Lidicky, Bernard
      Patent No.: 8,938,348
      Issue Date: Jan 20, 2015
    • Title: "Method for Determining Run-Curves for Vehicles Based on Travel Time"
      Inventors: Xu, Jingyang; Nikovski, Daniel N.
      Patent No.: 8,838,304
      Issue Date: Sep 16, 2014
    • Title: "Controlling Operation of Vapor Compression System"
      Inventors: Nikovski, Daniel N.; Laughman, Christopher; Burns, Dan J
      Patent No.: 8,793,003
      Issue Date: Jul 29, 2014
    • Title: "Method for Predicting Travel Times Using Autoregressive Models"
      Inventors: Nikovski, Daniel N.
      Patent No.: 8,762,036
      Issue Date: Jun 24, 2014
    • Title: "Method for Determining Run-Curves for Vehicles in Real-Time Subject to Dynamic Travel Time and Speed Limit Constraint"
      Inventors: Xu, Jingyang; Nikovski, Daniel N.
      Patent No.: 8,660,723
      Issue Date: Feb 25, 2014
    • Title: "Method for Matching Elements in Schemas of Databases Using a Bayesian Network"
      Inventors: Nikovski, Daniel N.
      Patent No.: 8,577,857
      Issue Date: Nov 5, 2013
    • Title: "Method for Scheduling the Operation of Power Generators using Factored Markov Decision Process"
      Inventors: Nikovski, Daniel N.
      Patent No.: 8,566,266
      Issue Date: Oct 22, 2013
    • Title: "A Method for Converting Dynamical Systems with Continuous State Spaces into Markov Decision Processes with Discrete States"
      Inventors: Nikovski, Daniel N.
      Patent No.: 8,412,649
      Issue Date: Apr 2, 2013
    • Title: "HVAC Control System"
      Inventors: Forlines, Clifton L.; Nikovski, Daniel N.
      Patent No.: 8,412,381
      Issue Date: Apr 2, 2013
    • Title: "A Method for Predicting Time Series with Seasonal Components"
      Inventors: Nikovski, Daniel N.
      Patent No.: 8,315,961
      Issue Date: Nov 20, 2012
    • Title: "Method and System for Classifying Data in System with Limited Memory"
      Inventors: Jain, Ankur; Nikovski, Daniel N.
      Patent No.: 8,108,325
      Issue Date: Jan 31, 2012
    • Title: "Method and System for Determining Instantaneous Peak Power Consumption in Elevator Banks"
      Inventors: Brand, Matthew E.; Nikovski, Daniel N.
      Patent No.: 7,743,890
      Issue Date: Jun 29, 2010
    • Title: "Method and Apparatus for Representing and Classifying Microwave Back-Projection Radar Signals"
      Inventors: Nikovski, Daniel N.; Jain, Ankur
      Patent No.: 7,671,786
      Issue Date: Mar 2, 2010
    • Title: "Method and System for Detecting Changes in Sensor Sample Streams"
      Inventors: Jain, Ankur; Nikovski, Daniel N.
      Patent No.: 7,555,399
      Issue Date: Jun 30, 2009
    • Title: "System and Method for Scheduling Elevator Cars Using Pairwise Delay Minimization"
      Inventors: Nikovski, Daniel N.; Brand, Matthew E.; Ebner, Dietmar
      Patent No.: 7,546,905
      Issue Date: Jun 16, 2009
    • Title: "System and Method for Scheduling Elevator Cars Using Branch-and-Bound"
      Inventors: Brand, Matthew E.; Nikovski, Daniel N.; Ebner, Dietmar
      Patent No.: 7,484,597
      Issue Date: Feb 3, 2009
    • Title: "Detecting and Diagnosing Faults in HVAC Equipment"
      Inventors: Peker, Kadir A.; Nikovski, Daniel N.; Radhakrishnan, Regunathan; Divakaran, Ajay
      Patent No.: 7,444,251
      Issue Date: Oct 28, 2008
    • Title: "Real-Time Retail Marketing System and Method"
      Inventors: Kato, Mamoru; Nikovski, Daniel N.; Divakaran, Ajay
      Patent No.: 7,240,834
      Issue Date: Jul 10, 2007
    • Title: "Method and System for Scheduling Cars in Elevator Systems Considering Existing and Future Passengers"
      Inventors: Brand, Matthew E.; Nikovski, Daniel N.
      Patent No.: 7,014,015
      Issue Date: Mar 21, 2006
    • Title: "Optimal Parking of Free Cars in Elevator Group Control"
      Inventors: Brand, Matthew E.; Nikovski, Daniel N.
      Patent No.: 6,808,049
      Issue Date: Oct 26, 2004
    • Title: "Method and System for Dynamic Programming of Elevators for Optimal Group Elevator Control"
      Inventors: Brand, Matthew E.; Nikovski, Daniel N.
      Patent No.: 6,672,431
      Issue Date: Jan 6, 2004
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