Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile
Espinace P., Kollar T., Roy N. and Soto A. (2013)

Indoor scene recognition by a mobile robot through adaptive object detection.

Revista : Robotics and Autonomous Systems
Volumen : 61
Número : 9
Páginas : 932-947
Tipo de publicación : ISI Ir a publicación


Mobile Robotics has achieved notably progress, however, to increase the complexity of the tasks that mobile robots can perform in natural environments, we need to provide them with a greater semantic understanding of their surrounding. In particular, identifying indoor scenes, such as an office or a kitchen, is a highly valuable perceptual ability for an indoor mobile robot, and in this paper we propose a new technique to achieve this goal. As a distinguishing feature, we use common objects, such as doors or furnitures, as a key intermediate representation to recognize indoor scenes. We frame our method as a generative probabilistic hierarchical model, where we use object category classifiers to associate low-level visual features to objects, and contextual relations to associate objects to scenes. The inherent semantic interpretation of common objects allows us to use rich sources of online data to populate the probabilistic terms of our model. In contrast to alternative computer vision based methods, we boost performance by exploiting the embedded and dynamic nature of a mobile robot. In particular, we increase detection accuracy and efficiency by using a 3D range sensor that allows us to implement a focus of attention mechanism based on geometric and structural information. Furthermore, we use concepts from information theory to propose an adaptive scheme that limits computational load by selectively guiding the search for informative objects. The operation of this scheme is facilitated by the dynamic nature of a mobile robot that is constantly changing its field of view. We test our approach using real data captured by a mobile robot navigating in office and home environments. Our results indicate that the proposed approach outperforms several state-of-the-art techniques for scene recognition.