How does a box work? A study in the qualitative dynamics of solid objects

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

This paper is an in-depth study of qualitative physical reasoning about one particular scenario: using a box to carry a collection of objects from one place to another. Specifically we consider the plan, plan1 "Load objects uCargo into box oBox one by one; carry oBox from location l1 to location l2". We present qualitative constraints on the shape, starting position, and material properties of uCargo and oBox and on the characteristics of the motion that suffice to make it virtually certain that plan1 can be successfully executed. We develop a theory, consisting mostly of first-order statements together with two default rules, that supports an inference of the form "If conditions XYZ hold, and the agent attempts to carry out plan1 then presumably he will succeed". Our theory is elaboration tolerant in the sense that carrying out the analogous inference for carrying objects in boxes with lids, in boxes with small holes, or on trays can reuse much of the same knowledge. The theory integrates reasoning about continuous time, Euclidean space, commonsense dynamics of solid objects, and semantics of partially specified plans.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberOn-line appendix: http://cs.nyu.edu/faculty/davise/box-proof.pdf
Pages (from-to)299-345
Number of pages47
JournalArtificial Intelligence
Volume175
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 21 2010

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Materials properties
Semantics
semantics
scenario
Inference
time
Hole
Elaboration
Physical
Material Properties
Reuse
Scenarios

Keywords

  • Commonsense reasoning
  • Dynamics
  • Kinematics
  • Naive physics
  • Planning
  • Qualitative physics
  • Solid objects

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Artificial Intelligence

Cite this

How does a box work? A study in the qualitative dynamics of solid objects. / Davis, Ernest.

In: Artificial Intelligence, Vol. 175, No. 1, On-line appendix: http://cs.nyu.edu/faculty/davise/box-proof.pdf, 21.10.2010, p. 299-345.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Davis, E 2010, 'How does a box work? A study in the qualitative dynamics of solid objects', Artificial Intelligence, vol. 175, no. 1, On-line appendix: http://cs.nyu.edu/faculty/davise/box-proof.pdf, pp. 299-345. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.artint.2010.04.006
Davis E. How does a box work? A study in the qualitative dynamics of solid objects. Artificial Intelligence. 2010 Oct 21;175(1):299-345. On-line appendix: http://cs.nyu.edu/faculty/davise/box-proof.pdf. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.artint.2010.04.006
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