Segmentation via Manipulation

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Tsikos, Constantine J
Bajcsy, Ruzena K

The motivation for this paper is the observation that a static scene that contains more than one object/part most of the time cannot be segmented only by vision or in general by any non-contact sensing. Exception to this is only the case when the objects/parts are physically separated so that the non-contact sensor can measure this separation or one knows a great deal of a priori knowledge about the objects (their geometry, material, etc.). We assume no such knowledge is available. Instead, we assume that the scene is reachable with a manipulator. Hence the problem represents a class of problems of segmentation that occur on an assembly line, bin picking, organizing a desk top, and the like. What are the typical properties of this class of problems? 1. The objects are rigid. Their size and weight is such that they are manipulable with an suitable end effector. Their numbers on the scene is such that in a reasonable time each piece can be examined and manipulated, i.e the complexity of the scene is bounded. 2. The scene is accessible to the sensors, i.e the whole scene is visible, although some parts may be occluded, and reachable by the manipulator. 3. There is a well defined goal which is detectable by the available sensors. Specifically the goal maybe: an empty scene, or an organized/ ordered scene.

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University of Pennsylvania Department of Computer and Information Science Technical Report No. MS-CIS-88-42.
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