Matching Items (28)

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Fielding an Autonomous Cobot in a University Environment: Engineering and Evaluation

Description

Many researchers aspire to create robotics systems that assist humans in common office tasks, especially by taking over delivery and messaging tasks. For meaningful interactions to take place, a mobile robot must be able to identify the humans it interacts

Many researchers aspire to create robotics systems that assist humans in common office tasks, especially by taking over delivery and messaging tasks. For meaningful interactions to take place, a mobile robot must be able to identify the humans it interacts with and communicate successfully with them. It must also be able to successfully navigate the office environment. While mobile robots are well suited for navigating and interacting with elements inside a deterministic office environment, attempting to interact with human beings in an office environment remains a challenge due to the limits on the amount of cost-efficient compute power onboard the robot. In this work, I propose the use of remote cloud services to offload intensive interaction tasks. I detail the interactions required in an office environment and discuss the challenges faced when implementing a human-robot interaction platform in a stochastic office environment. I also experiment with cloud services for facial recognition, speech recognition, and environment navigation and discuss my results. As part of my thesis, I have implemented a human-robot interaction system utilizing cloud APIs into a mobile robot, enabling it to navigate the office environment, identify humans within the environment, and communicate with these humans.

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Created

Date Created
2017-05

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Extended LTLvis motion planning interface

Description

Robots are becoming an important part of our life and industry. Although a lot of robot control interfaces have been developed to simplify the control method and improve user experience, users still cannot control robots comfortably. With the improvements of

Robots are becoming an important part of our life and industry. Although a lot of robot control interfaces have been developed to simplify the control method and improve user experience, users still cannot control robots comfortably. With the improvements of the robot functions, the requirements of universality and ease of use of robot control interfaces are also increasing. This research introduces a graphical interface for Linear Temporal Logic (LTL) specifications for mobile robots. It is a sketch based interface built on the Android platform which makes the LTL control interface more friendly to non-expert users. By predefining a set of areas of interest, this interface can quickly and efficiently create plans that satisfy extended plan goals in LTL. The interface can also allow users to customize the paths for this plan by sketching a set of reference trajectories. Given the custom paths by the user, the LTL specification and the environment, the interface generates a plan balancing the customized paths and the LTL specifications. We also show experimental results with the implemented interface.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
2016

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Representing Hybrid Transition Systems in an Action Language Modulo ODEs

Description

Several physical systems exist in the real world that involve continuous as well as discrete changes. These range from natural dynamic systems like the system of a bouncing ball to robotic dynamic systems such as planning the motion of a

Several physical systems exist in the real world that involve continuous as well as discrete changes. These range from natural dynamic systems like the system of a bouncing ball to robotic dynamic systems such as planning the motion of a robot across obstacles. The key aspects of effectively describing such dynamic systems is to be able to plan and verify the evolution of the continuous components of the system while simultaneously maintaining critical constraints. Developing a framework that can effectively represent and find solutions to such physical systems prove to be highly advantageous. Both hybrid automata and action languages are formal models for describing the evolution of dynamic systems. The action language C+ is a rich and expressive language framework to formalize physical systems, but can be used only with physical systems in the discrete domain and is limited in its support of continuous domain components of such systems. Hybrid Automata is a well established formalism used to represent such complex physical systems at a theoretical level, however it is not expressive enough to capture the complex relations between the components of the system the way C+ does.

This thesis will focus on establishing a formal relationship between these two formalisms by showing how to succinctly represent Hybrid Automata in an action language which in turn is defined as a high-level notation for answer set programming modulo theories (ASPMT) --- an extension of answer set programs in the first-order level. Furthermore, this encoding framework is shown to be more effective and expressive than Hybrid Automata by highlighting its ability in allowing states of a hybrid transition system to be defined by complex relations among components that would otherwise be abstracted away in Hybrid Automata. The framework is further realized in the implementation of the system CPLUS2ASPMT, which takes advantage of state of the art ODE(Ordinary Differential Equations) based SMT solver dReal to provide support for ODE based evolution of continuous components of a dynamic system.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
2017

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Human factors analysis of automated planning technologies for human-robot teaming

Description

Humans and robots need to work together as a team to accomplish certain shared goals due to the limitations of current robot capabilities. Human assistance is required to accomplish the tasks as human capabilities are often better suited for certain

Humans and robots need to work together as a team to accomplish certain shared goals due to the limitations of current robot capabilities. Human assistance is required to accomplish the tasks as human capabilities are often better suited for certain tasks and they complement robot capabilities in many situations. Given the necessity of human-robot teams, it has been long assumed that for the robotic agent to be an effective team member, it must be equipped with automated planning technologies that helps in achieving the goals that have been delegated to it by their human teammates as well as in deducing its own goal to proactively support its human counterpart by inferring their goals. However there has not been any systematic evaluation on the accuracy of this claim.

In my thesis, I perform human factors analysis on effectiveness of such automated planning technologies for remote human-robot teaming. In the first part of my study, I perform an investigation on effectiveness of automated planning in remote human-robot teaming scenarios. In the second part of my study, I perform an investigation on effectiveness of a proactive robot assistant in remote human-robot teaming scenarios.

Both investigations are conducted in a simulated urban search and rescue (USAR) scenario where the human-robot teams are deployed during early phases of an emergency response to explore all areas of the disaster scene. I evaluate through both the studies, how effective is automated planning technology in helping the human-robot teams move closer to human-human teams. I utilize both objective measures (like accuracy and time spent on primary and secondary tasks, Robot Attention Demand, etc.) and a set of subjective Likert-scale questions (on situation awareness, immediacy etc.) to investigate the trade-offs between different types of remote human-robot teams. The results from both the studies seem to suggest that intelligent robots with automated planning capability and proactive support ability is welcomed in general.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
2015

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Hierarchical Manipulation for Constructing Free Standing Structures

Description

In order for a robot to solve complex tasks in real world, it needs to compute discrete, high-level strategies that can be translated into continuous movement trajectories. These problems become increasingly difficult with increasing numbers of objects and domain constraints,

In order for a robot to solve complex tasks in real world, it needs to compute discrete, high-level strategies that can be translated into continuous movement trajectories. These problems become increasingly difficult with increasing numbers of objects and domain constraints, as well as with the increasing degrees of freedom of robotic manipulator arms.

The first part of this thesis develops and investigates new methods for addressing these problems through hierarchical task and motion planning for manipulation with a focus on autonomous construction of free-standing structures using precision-cut planks. These planks can be arranged in various orientations to design complex structures; reliably and autonomously building such structures from scratch is computationally intractable due to the long planning horizon and the infinite branching factor of possible grasps and placements that the robot could make.

An abstract representation is developed for this class of problems and show how pose generators can be used to autonomously compute feasible robot motion plans for constructing a given structure. The approach was evaluated through simulation and on a real ABB YuMi robot. Results show that hierarchical algorithms for planning can effectively overcome the computational barriers to solving such problems.

The second part of this thesis proposes a deep learning-based algorithm to identify critical regions for motion planning. Further investigation is done whether these learned critical regions can be translated to learn high-level landmark actions for automated planning.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
2019

Roblocks: An Educational System for AI Planning and Reasoning

Description

This research introduces Roblocks, a user-friendly system for learning Artificial Intelligence (AI) planning concepts using mobile manipulator robots. It uses a visual programming interface based on block-structured programming to make AI planning concepts easier to grasp for those who are

This research introduces Roblocks, a user-friendly system for learning Artificial Intelligence (AI) planning concepts using mobile manipulator robots. It uses a visual programming interface based on block-structured programming to make AI planning concepts easier to grasp for those who are new to robotics and AI planning. Users get to accomplish any desired tasks by dynamically populating puzzle shaped blocks encoding the robot’s possible actions, allowing them to carry out tasks like navigation, planning, and manipulation by connecting blocks instead of writing code. Roblocks has two levels, where in the first level users are made to re-arrange a jumbled set of actions of a plan in the correct order so that a given goal could be achieved. In the second level, they select actions of their choice but at each step only those actions pertaining to the current state are made available to them, thereby pruning down the vast number of possible actions and suggesting only the truly feasible and relevant actions. Both of these levels have a simulation where the user plan is executed. Moreover, if the user plan is invalid or fails to achieve the given goal condition then an explanation for the failure is provided in simple English language. This makes it easier for everyone (especially for non-roboticists) to understand the cause of the failure.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
2019

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Addressing Problems Facing Unmanned Aerial System Scheduling Systems in Urban Environments

Description

Research literature was reviewed to find recommended tools and technologies for operating Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) fleets in an urban environment. However, restrictive legislation prohibits fully autonomous flight without an operator. Existing literature covers considerations for operating UAS fleets in

Research literature was reviewed to find recommended tools and technologies for operating Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) fleets in an urban environment. However, restrictive legislation prohibits fully autonomous flight without an operator. Existing literature covers considerations for operating UAS fleets in a controlled environment, with an emphasis on the effect different networking approaches have on the topology of the UAS network. The primary network topology used to implement UAS communications is 802.11 protocols, which can transmit telemetry and a video stream using off the shelf hardware. Other implementations use low-frequency radios for long distance communication, or higher latency 4G LTE modems to access existing network infrastructure. However, a gap remains testing different network topologies outside of a controlled environment.

With the correct permits in place, further research can explore how different UAS network topologies behave in an urban environment when implemented with off the shelf UAS hardware. In addition to testing different network topologies, this thesis covers the implementation of building a secure, scalable system using modern cloud computation tools and services capable of supporting a variable number of UAS. The system also supports the end-to-end simulation of the system considering factors such as battery life and realistic UAS kinematics. The implementation of the system leads to new findings needed to deploy UAS fleets in urban environments.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
2018

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Asymmetric Error Control for Classification in Medical Disease Diagnosis

Description

In classification applications, such as medical disease diagnosis, the cost of one type of error (false negative) could greatly outweigh the other (false positive) enabling the need of asymmetric error control. Due to this unique nature of the problem, traditional

In classification applications, such as medical disease diagnosis, the cost of one type of error (false negative) could greatly outweigh the other (false positive) enabling the need of asymmetric error control. Due to this unique nature of the problem, traditional machine learning techniques, even with much improved accuracy, may not be ideal as they do not provide a way to control the false negatives below a certain threshold. To address this need, a classification algorithm that can provide asymmetric error control is proposed. The theoretical foundation for this algorithm is based on Neyman-Pearson (NP) Lemma and it is complemented with sample splitting and order statistics to pick a threshold that enables an upper bound on the number of false negatives. Additionally, this classifier addresses the imbalance of the data, which is common in medical datasets, by using Hellinger distance as the splitting criterion. This eliminates the need of sampling methods, which add complexity and the need for parameter selection. This approach is used to create a novel tree-based classifier that enables asymmetric error control. Applications, such as prediction of the severity of cardiac arrhythmia, require classification over multiple classes. The NP oracle inequalities for binary classes are not immediately applicable for the multiclass NP classification, leading to a multi-step procedure proposed in this dissertation to extend the algorithm in the context of multiple classes. This classifier is used in predicting various forms of cardiac disease for both binary and multi-class classification problems with not only comparable accuracy metrics but also with full control over the number of false negatives. Moreover, this research allows us to pick the threshold for the classifier in a data adaptive way. This dissertation also shows that this methodology can be extended to non medical applications that require classification with asymmetric error control.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
2021

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Learning Complex Behaviors from Simple Ones: An analysis of Behavior-based Modular Design for RL Agents

Description

Traditional Reinforcement Learning (RL) assumes to learn policies with respect to reward available from the environment but sometimes learning in a complex domain requires wisdom which comes from a wide range of experience. In behavior based robotics, it is observed

Traditional Reinforcement Learning (RL) assumes to learn policies with respect to reward available from the environment but sometimes learning in a complex domain requires wisdom which comes from a wide range of experience. In behavior based robotics, it is observed that a complex behavior can be described by a combination of simpler behaviors. It is tempting to apply similar idea such that simpler behaviors can be combined in a meaningful way to tailor the complex combination. Such an approach would enable faster learning and modular design of behaviors. Complex behaviors can be combined with other behaviors to create even more advanced behaviors resulting in a rich set of possibilities. Similar to RL, combined behavior can keep evolving by interacting with the environment. The requirement of this method is to specify a reasonable set of simple behaviors. In this research, I present an algorithm that aims at combining behavior such that the resulting behavior has characteristics of each individual behavior. This approach has been inspired by behavior based robotics, such as the subsumption architecture and motor schema-based design. The combination algorithm outputs n weights to combine behaviors linearly. The weights are state dependent and change dynamically at every step in an episode. This idea is tested on discrete and continuous environments like OpenAI’s “Lunar Lander” and “Biped Walker”. Results are compared with related domains like Multi-objective RL, Hierarchical RL, Transfer learning, and basic RL. It is observed that the combination of behaviors is a novel way of learning which helps the agent achieve required characteristics. A combination is learned for a given state and so the agent is able to learn faster in an efficient manner compared to other similar approaches. Agent beautifully demonstrates characteristics of multiple behaviors which helps the agent to learn and adapt to the environment. Future directions are also suggested as possible extensions to this research.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
2021

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Learning Interpretable Action Models of Simulated Agents Through Agent Interrogation

Description

Understanding the limits and capabilities of an AI system is essential for safe and effective usability of modern AI systems. In the query-based AI assessment paradigm, a personalized assessment module queries a black-box AI system on behalf of a user

Understanding the limits and capabilities of an AI system is essential for safe and effective usability of modern AI systems. In the query-based AI assessment paradigm, a personalized assessment module queries a black-box AI system on behalf of a user and returns a user-interpretable model of the AI system’s capabilities. This thesis develops this paradigm to learn interpretable action models of simulator-based agents. Two types of agents are considered: the first uses high-level actions where the user’s vocabulary captures the simulator state perfectly, and the second operates on low-level actions where the user’s vocabulary captures only an abstraction of the simulator state. Methods are developed to interface the assessment module with these agents. Empirical results show that this method is capable of learning interpretable models of agents operating in a range of domains.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
2021