Integrating Declarative Programming and Probabilistic Planning for Robots

Zhang, Shiqi (Texas Tech University) | Sridharan, Mohan (Texas Tech University)

AAAI Conferences 

Mobile robots deployed in complex real-world domains typically find it difficult to process all sensor inputs or operate without substantial domain knowledge. At the same time, humans may not have the time and expertise to provide elaborateand accurate knowledge or feedback. The architecture described in this paper combines declarative programming and probabilistic sequential decision-making to address these challenges. Specifically, Answer Set Programming (ASP), a declarative programming paradigm, is combined with hierarchical partially observable Markov decision processes (POMDPs), enabling robots to: (a) represent and reason with incomplete domain knowledge, revising existing knowledge using information extracted from sensor inputs; (b) probabilistically model the uncertainty in sensor input processing and navigation; and (c) use domain knowledge to revise probabilistic beliefs, exploiting positive and negative observations to identify situations in which the assigned task can no longer be pursued. All algorithms are evaluated in simulation and on mobile robots locating target objects in indoor domains.