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Visual Attention for Robotic Cognition: A Survey

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2 Author(s)
Begum, M. ; Sch. of Interactive Comput., Georgia Inst. of Technol., Atlanta, GA, USA ; Karray, F.

The goal of the cognitive robotics research is to design robots with human-like cognition (albeit reduced complexity) in perception, reasoning, action planning, and decision making. Such a venture of cognitive robotics has developed robots with redundant number of sensors and actuators in order to perceive the world and act up on it in a human-like fashion. A major challenge to deal with these robots is managing the enormous amount of information continuously arriving through multiple sensors. The primates master this information management skill through their custom-built attention mechanism. Mimicking the attention behavior of the primates, therefore, has gained tremendous popularity in robotic research in the recent years ( Bar-Cohen , Biologically Inspired Intelligent Robots, 2003, and B. Webb , Biorobotics, 2003). The difficulties of redundant information management, however, is the most severe in case of visual perception of the robots. Even a moderate size image of the natural scene generally contains enough visual information to easily overload the on-line decision making process of an autonomous robot. Modeling primates-like visual attention mechanism for the robot, therefore, is becoming more popular among the robotic researchers. A visual attention model enables the robot to selectively (and autonomously) choose a “behaviorally relevant” segment of visual information for further processing while relative exclusion of the others. This paper sheds light on the ongoing journey of robotics research to achieve a visual attention model which will serve as a component of cognition of the modern-day robots.

Published in:

Autonomous Mental Development, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:3 ,  Issue: 1 )

Date of Publication:

March 2011

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