We present a manipulation path planner under development for providing high-level software control for humanoid robots. Using a graphical simulation environment, the software is designed to facilitate the automation of object grasping and manipulation tasks. Given a robot's internal model of the environment and a desired posture, we use a randomized path planner to search directly the configuration space of the robot for a collision-free manipulation path. The simulation environment can be used as a graphical user interface for directly controlling or interacting with a robot operating in the real world. We view this as a potential useful tool for the visualization and development of complex robotic systems, as well as an interactive, task-level programming interface.
Keywords: Humanoid Robot, Object Manipulation, Path Planning, Randomized Algorithm