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HOTSPOT: An Ad Hoc Teamwork Platform for Mixed Human-Robot Teams
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  • João G. Ribeiro ,
  • Luis Müller Henriques ,
  • Sérgio Colcher ,
  • Julio Cesar Duarte ,
  • Francisco S. Melo ,
  • Ruy Luiz Milidiú ,
  • Alberto Sardinha
João G. Ribeiro
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Luis Müller Henriques
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Sérgio Colcher
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Julio Cesar Duarte
Instituto Militar de Engenharia

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

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Francisco S. Melo
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Ruy Luiz Milidiú
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Alberto Sardinha
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Ad hoc teamwork is a research topic in multi-agent systems whereby an agent (the “ad hoc agent”) must successfully collaborate with a set of unknown agents (the “teammates”) without any prior coordination or communication protocol. However, research in ad hoc teamwork is predominantly focused on agent-only teams, but not in agent-human teams, which we believe is an exciting research avenue and has enormous application potential in human-robot teams. This paper will tap into this potential by proposing HOTSPOT, the first framework for ad hoc teamwork in human-robot teams. Our framework comprises two main modules, addressing the two key challenges in the interaction between a robot acting as the ad hoc agent and human teammates. First, a decision-theoretic module that is responsible for all task-related decision making (task identification, teammate identification, and planning). Second, a communication module that uses natural language processing in order to parse all communication between the robot and the human. To evaluate our framework, we use a task where a mobile robot and a human cooperatively collect objects in an open space, illustrating the main features of our framework in a real-world task.