The Intelligent Hand: An Experimental Approach to Human-Object Recognition and Implications for Robotics and AI

Susan J. Lederman, Roberta L. Klatzky


The information in this article was originally presented as a keynote invited talk by Susan Lederman at the Thirteenth International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence in Chambery, France; it is based primarily on a joint research program that we conducted. We explain how the scientific study of biological systems offers a complementary approach to the more formal analytic methods favored by roboticists; such study is also relevant to a number of classical problems addressed by the AI field. We offer an example of the scientific approach that is based on a selection of our experiments and empirically driven theoretical work on human haptic (tactual) object processing; the nature and role of active manual exploration is of particular concern. We further suggest how this program with humans can be modified and extended to guide the development of highlevel manual exploration strategies for robots equipped with a haptic perceptual system.

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