A User Interface for Knowledge Acquisition from Video

Henry Lieberman

In conventional knowledge acquisition, a domain expert interacts with a knowledge engineer, who interviews the expert, and codes knowledge about the domain objects and procedures in a rule-based language, or other textual representation language. This indirect methodology can be tedious and error-prone, since the domain expert’s verbal descriptions can be inaccurate or incomplete, and the knowledge engineer may not correctly interpret the expert’s intent. We describe a user interface that allows a domain expert who is not a programmer to construct representations of objects and procedures directly from a video of a human performing an example procedure. The domain expert need not be fluent in the underlying representation language, since all interaction is through direct manipulation. Starting from digitized video, the user selects significant frames that illustrate before- and after- states of important operations. Then the user graphically annotates the contents of each selected frame, selecting portions of the image to represent each part, labeling the parts, and indicating part/whole relationships. Finally, programming by demonstration techniques describe the actions that represent the transition between frames. The result is object descriptions for each object in the domain, generalized procedural descriptions, and visual and natural language documentation of the procedure. We illustrate the system in the domain of documentation of operational and maintenance procedures for electrical devices.

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