Usability Evaluation of High-Level User Assistance for Robot Mission Specification
Arkin, Ronald C.
MacKenzie, Douglas Christopher
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MissionLab is a mission specification system that implements a hybrid deliberative and reactive control architecture for autonomous mobile robots. The user creates and executes the robot mission plans through its graphical user interface. As robot deployments become more common in highly stressful situations, such as in dealing with explosives or biohazards, the usability of their mission specification system becomes critical. To address this need, a mission-planning “wizard” has been recently integrated into MissionLab. By retrieving and adapting past successful mission plans stored in its database, this new feature is designed to simplify the user’s planning process. The latest formal usability experiments, reported in this paper, testing for usability improvements in terms of speed of the mission planning process, accuracy of the produced mission plans, and ease of use is conducted. This paper introduces the mission-planning wizard, describes the usability experiments (including design), and discusses the results in detail.