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Designing and evaluating a social gaze-control system for a humanoid robot

Zaraki, Abolfazl; Mazzei, Daniele; Giuliani, Manuel; De Rossi, Danilo


Abolfazl Zaraki

Daniele Mazzei

Manuel Giuliani
Co- Director Bristol Robotics Laboratory

Danilo De Rossi


This paper describes a context-dependent social gaze-control system implemented as part of a humanoid social robot. The system enables the robot to direct its gaze at multiple humans who are interacting with each other and with the robot. The attention mechanism of the gaze-control system is based on features that have been proven to guide human attention: nonverbal and verbal cues, proxemics, the visual field of view, and the habituation effect. Our gaze-control system uses Kinect skeleton tracking together with speech recognition and SHORE-based facial expression recognition to implement the same features. As part of a pilot evaluation, we collected the gaze behavior of 11 participants in an eye-tracking study. We showed participants videos of two-person interactions and tracked their gaze behavior. A comparison of the human gaze behavior with the behavior of our gaze-control system running on the same videos shows that it replicated human gaze behavior 89% of the time. © 2013 IEEE.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jan 19, 2014
Publication Date Jan 1, 2014
Journal IEEE Transactions on Human-Machine Systems
Print ISSN 2168-2291
Electronic ISSN 2168-2291
Publisher Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 44
Issue 2
Pages 157-168
Keywords active vision, context-dependent social gaze behavior, human-robot interaction, scene analysis, social attention
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