REGROUP: A Robot-Centric Group Detection and Tracking System

Date: 2/3/2022

Speaker: Angelique Taylor

Location: 122 Gates Hall

Time: 2:40 p.m.-3:30 p.m.

Abstract: To facilitate the field of Human-Robot Interaction (HRI) to transition from dyadic to group interaction with robots, new methods are needed for robots to sense and understand human team behavior. We introduce the Robot-Centric Group Detection and Tracking System (REGROUP), a new method that enables robots to detect and track groups of people from an ego-centric perspective using a crowd-aware, tracking-by-detection approach. Our system employs a novel technique that leverages person re-identification deep learning features to address the group data association problem. REGROUP is robust to real-world vision challenges such as occlusion, camera ego-motion, shadow, and varying lighting illuminations. Also, it runs in real-time on real-world data. We show that REGROUP outperformed three group detection methods by up to 40% in terms of precision and up to 18% in terms of recall. Also, we show that REGROUP’s group tracking method outperformed three state-of-the-art methods by up to 66% in terms of tracking accuracy and 20% in terms of tracking precision. We plan to publicly release our system to support HRI teaming research and development. We hope this work will enable the development of robots that can more effectively locate and perceive their teammates, particularly in uncertain, unstructured environments.

About the Speaker: Angelique Taylor is a Visiting Research Scientist at Meta Reality Labs Research. She received her Ph.D. in Computer Science and Engineering at UC San Diego. Her research lies at the intersection of computer vision, robotics, and health informatics. She develops systems that enable robots to interact and work with groups of people in safety-critical environments. At Meta, Dr. Taylor is working on augemented/virtual reality (AR/VR) systems that deploy AI algorithms to help multiple people coordinate to achieve a common goal on collaborative tasks. She has received the NSF GRFP, Microsoft Dissertation Award, the Google Anita Borg Memorial Fellowship, the Arthur J. Schmitt Presidential Fellowship, a GEM Fellowship, and an award from the National Center for Women in Information Technology (NCWIT). More information on her research can be found at