Propositional and Activity Monitoring Using Qualitative Spatial Reasoning
Communication is the key to effective teamwork regardless of whether the team members are humans or machines. Much of the communication that makes human teams so effective is non-verbal; they are able to recognize the actions that the other team members are performing and take their own actions in order to assist. A robotic team member should be able to make the same inferences, observing the state of the environment and inferring what actions are being taken. In this thesis I introduce a novel approach to the combined problem of activity recognition and propositional monitoring. This approach breaks down the problem into smaller sub-tasks. First, the raw sensor input is parsed into simple, easy to understand primitive semantic relationships known as qualitative spatial relations (QSRs). These primitives are then combined to estimate the state of the world in the same language used by most planners, planning domain definition language (PDDL) propositions. Both the primitives and propositions are combined to infer the status of the actions that the human is taking. I describe an algorithm for solving each of these smaller problems and describe the modeling process for a variety of tasks from an abstracted electronic component assembly (ECA) scenario. I implemented this scenario on a robotic testbed and collected data of a human performing the example actions.