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Reaching and pointing gestures calculated by a generic gesture system for social robots

Complete article


  • The proposed method can be used to generate gestures for an arbitrary social robot.
  • This paper focuses on how reaching and pointing gestures are calculated.
  • DH-parameters, orientation of the base frames and joint limits are used as input.
  • Joint angles are calculated using IK with a cost-function for natural postures.
  • The method was validated on several robots, including NAO, Justin and ASIMO.


Since the implementation of gestures for a certain robot generally involves the use of specific information about its morphology, these gestures are not easily transferable to other robots. To cope with this problem, we proposed a generic method to generate gestures, constructed independently of any configuration and therefore useable for different robots. In this paper, we discuss the novel end-effector mode of the method, which can be used to calculate gestures whereby the position of the end-effector is important, for example for reaching for or pointing towards an object. The interesting and innovative feature of our method is its high degree of flexibility in both the possible configurations wherefore the method can be used, as in the gestures to be calculated. The method was validated on several configurations, including those of the robots ASIMO, NAO and Justin. In this paper, the working principles of the end-effector mode are discussed and a number of results are presented.

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