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Open AccessArticle

F-Formations for Social Interaction in Simulation Using Virtual Agents and Mobile Robotic Telepresence Systems

1
Center for Applied Autonomous Sensor Systems (AASS), School of Science and Technology, Örebro University, 70182 Örebro, Sweden
2
School of Innovation, Design and Engineering, Mälardalen University, 72123 Västerås, Sweden
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Multimodal Technologies Interact. 2019, 3(4), 69; https://doi.org/10.3390/mti3040069
Received: 7 August 2019 / Revised: 10 October 2019 / Accepted: 14 October 2019 / Published: 17 October 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Future of Intelligent Human-Robot Collaboration)
F-formations are a set of possible patterns in which groups of people tend to spatially organize themselves while engaging in social interactions. In this paper, we study the behavior of teleoperators of mobile robotic telepresence systems to determine whether they adhere to spatial formations when navigating to groups. This work uses a simulated environment in which teleoperators are requested to navigate to different groups of virtual agents. The simulated environment represents a conference lobby scenario where multiple groups of Virtual Agents with varying group sizes are placed in different spatial formations. The task requires teleoperators to navigate a robot to join each group using an egocentric-perspective camera. In a second phase, teleoperators are allowed to evaluate their own performance by reviewing how they navigated the robot from an exocentric perspective. The two important outcomes from this study are, firstly, teleoperators inherently respect F-formations even when operating a mobile robotic telepresence system. Secondly, teleoperators prefer additional support in order to correctly navigate the robot into a preferred position that adheres to F-formations. View Full-Text
Keywords: telepresence; mobile robotic telepresence; F-formations; simulation; virtual agents; HRI telepresence; mobile robotic telepresence; F-formations; simulation; virtual agents; HRI
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Pathi, S.K.; Kristoffersson, A.; Kiselev, A.; Loutfi, A. F-Formations for Social Interaction in Simulation Using Virtual Agents and Mobile Robotic Telepresence Systems. Multimodal Technologies Interact. 2019, 3, 69.

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