Teaching Cameras to Feel: Estimating Tactile Physical Properties of Surfaces From Images

04/29/2020 ∙ by Matthew Purri, et al. ∙ 0

The connection between visual input and tactile sensing is critical for object manipulation tasks such as grasping and pushing. In this work, we introduce the challenging task of estimating a set of tactile physical properties from visual information. We aim to build a model that learns the complex mapping between visual information and tactile physical properties. We construct a first of its kind image-tactile dataset with over 400 multiview image sequences and the corresponding tactile properties. A total of fifteen tactile physical properties across categories including friction, compliance, adhesion, texture, and thermal conductance are measured and then estimated by our models. We develop a cross-modal framework comprised of an adversarial objective and a novel visuo-tactile joint classification loss. Additionally, we develop a neural architecture search framework capable of selecting optimal combinations of viewing angles for estimating a given physical property.

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