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Human Control of Leader-Based Swarms

Walker, Phillip and Amirpour Amraii, Saman and Lewis, Michael and Chakraborty, Nilanjan and Sycara, Katia (2013) Human Control of Leader-Based Swarms. In: 2013 IEEE International Conference on Systems, Man and Cybernetics, 13 October 2013 - 16 October 2013, Manchester, UK.

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As swarms are used in increasingly more complex scenarios, further investigation is needed to determine how to give human operators the best tools to properly influence the swarm after deployment. Previous research has focused on relaying influence from the operator to the swarm, either by broadcasting commands to the entire swarm or by influencing the swarm through the teleoperation of a leader. While these methods each have their different applications, there has been a lack of research into how the influence should be propagated through the swarm in leader-based methods. This paper focuses on two simple methods of information propagation-flooding and consensus-and compares the ability of operators to maneuver the swarm to goal points using each, both with and without sensing error. Flooding involves each robot explicitly matching the speed and direction of the leader (or matching the speed and direction of the first neighboring robot that has already done so), and consensus involves each robot matching the average speed and direction of all the neighbors it senses. We discover that the flooding method is significantly more effective, yet the consensus method has some advantages at lower speeds, and in terms of overall connectivity and cohesion of the swarm.


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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Status: Published
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Walker, Phillip
Amirpour Amraii, Saman
Lewis, Michael
Chakraborty, Nilanjan
Sycara, Katia
Date: October 2013
Date Type: Publication
Journal or Publication Title: Proceedings of the 2013 IEEE International Conference on Systems, Man and Cybernetics
Publisher: IEEE Computer Society
Place of Publication: Washington, DC
Page Range: 2712 - 2717
Event Title: 2013 IEEE International Conference on Systems, Man and Cybernetics
Event Dates: 13 October 2013 - 16 October 2013
Event Type: Conference
DOI or Unique Handle: 10.1109/smc.2013.462
Schools and Programs: School of Information Sciences > Information Science
Refereed: Yes
Official URL:
Date Deposited: 16 Jun 2014 16:57
Last Modified: 01 Nov 2017 12:55


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