Keywords: augmented reality (AR), mixed reality (MR), deictic gesture, non-verbal communication, physical embodiment, robotics, mobile robots, human-robot interaction (HRI)
Abstract: Augmented Reality (AR) or Mixed Reality (MR) enables innovative interactions by overlaying virtual imagery over the physical world. For roboticists, this creates new opportunities to apply proven non-verbal interaction patterns, like gesture, to physically-limited robots. However, a wealth of HRI research has demonstrated that there are real benefits to physical embodiment (compared, e.g., to virtual robots displayed on screens). This suggests that AR augmentation of virtual robot parts could lead to similar challenges. In this work, we present the design of an experiment to objectively and subjectively compare the use of AR and physical arms for deictic gesture, in AR and physical task environments. Our future results will inform robot designers choosing between the use of physical and virtual arms, and provide new nuanced understanding of the use of mixed-reality technologies in HRI contexts.