Closing the Feedback Loop: The Relationship Between Input and Output Modalities in Human-Robot Interactions

Tamara Markovich, Shanee Honig, Tal Oron-Gilad

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


Previous studies suggested that communication modalities used for human control and robot feedback influence human-robot interactions. However, they generally tended to focus on one part of the communication, ignoring the relationship between control and feedback modalities. We aim to understand whether the relationship between a user’s control modality and a robot’s feedback modality influences the quality of the interaction and if so, find the most compatible pairings. In a laboratory Wizard-of-Oz experiment, participants were asked to guide a robot through a maze by using either hand gestures or vocal commands. The robot provided vocal or motion feedback to the users across the experimental conditions forming different combinations of control-feedback modalities. We found that the combinations of control-feedback modalities affected the quality of human-robot interaction (subjective experience and efficiency) in different ways. Participants showed less worry and were slower when they communicated with the robot by voice and received vocal feedback, compared to gestural control and receiving vocal feedback. In addition, they felt more distress and were faster when they communicated with the robot by gestures and received motion feedback compared to vocal control and motion feedback. We also found that providing feedback improves the quality of human-robot interaction. In this paper we detail the procedure and results of this experiment.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSpringer Proceedings in Advanced Robotics
PublisherSpringer Science and Business Media B.V.
Number of pages14
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2020

Publication series

NameSpringer Proceedings in Advanced Robotics
ISSN (Print)2511-1256
ISSN (Electronic)2511-1264


  • Feedback by motion cues
  • Feedback loop
  • Human-robot interaction
  • Navigation task
  • Stimulus-response compatibility

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Engineering (miscellaneous)
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics


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