Aleksandar Taranović, Aleksandar Jevtić, and Carme Torras
Institut de Robòtica i Informàtica Industrial, CSIC-UPC, C/ Llorens i Artigas 4-6, 08028 Barcelona, Spain.
Interaction of socially assistive robots with users is based on social cues coming from different interaction modalities, such as speech or gestures. However, using all modalities at all times may be inefficient as it can overload the user with redundant information and increase the task completion time. Additionally, users may favor certain modalities over the other as a result of their disability or personal preference. In this paper, we propose an Adaptive Modality Selection (AMS) algorithm that chooses modalities depending on the state of the user and the environment, as well as user preferences. The variables that describe the environment and the user state are defined as resources, and we posit that modalities are successful if certain resources possess specific values during their use. Besides the resources, the proposed algorithm takes into account user preferences which it learns while interacting with users. We tested our algorithm in simulations, and we implemented it on a robotic system that provides cognitive training, specifically Sequential memory exercises. Experimental results show that it is possible to use only a subset of available modalities without compromising the interaction. Moreover, we see a trend for users to perform better when interacting with a system with implemented AMS algorithm.
An example interaction of the robotic system with implemented Adaptive Modality Selection algorithm that provides cognitive training: