Expressive Lights for Revealing Mobile Service Robot State

Kim Baraka, Ana Paiva and Manuela Veloso

In Proceedings of the 2nd Iberian Robotics Conference (Robot 2015), pp. 283-295, 2015

Expressive Lights for Revealing Mobile Service Robot State

Abstract:

Autonomous mobile service robots move in our buildings, carrying out different tasks across multiple floors. While moving and performing their tasks, these robots find themselves in a variety of states. Although speech is often used for communicating the robot’s state to humans, such communication can often be ineffective. We investigate the use of lights as a persistent visualization of the robot’s state in relation to both tasks and environmental factors. Programmable lights offer a large degree of choices in terms of animation pattern, color and speed. We present this space of choices and introduce different animation profiles that we consider to animate a set of programmable lights on the robot. We conduct experiments to query about suitable animations for three representative scenarios of our autonomous symbiotic robot, CoBot. Our work enables CoBot to make its state persistently visible to humans.