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  1. We address the problem of goal-directed cloth manipulation, a chal- lenging task due to the deformability of cloth. Our insight is that optical flow, a technique normally used for motion estimation in video, can also provide an effective representation for corresponding cloth poses across observation and goal images. We introduce FabricFlowNet (FFN), a cloth manipulation policy that leverages flow as both an input and as an action representation to improve performance. FabricFlowNet also elegantly switches between dual-arm and single- arm actions based on the desired goal. We show that FabricFlowNet significantly outperforms state-of-the-art model-free and model-based cloth manipulation policies. We also present real-world experiments on a bimanual system, demonstrating effective sim-to-real transfer. Finally, we show that our method generalizes when trained on a single square cloth to other cloth shapes, such as T-shirts and rectangular cloths. Video and other supplementary materials are available at:
  2. Cloth detection and manipulation is a common task in domestic and industrial settings, yet such tasks remain a challenge for robots due to cloth deformability. Furthermore, in many cloth-related tasks like laundry folding and bed making, it is crucial to manipulate specific regions like edges and corners, as opposed to folds. In this work, we focus on the problem of segmenting and grasping these key regions. Our approach trains a network to segment the edges and corners of a cloth from a depth image, distinguishing such regions from wrinkles or folds. We also provide a novel algorithm for estimating the grasp location, direction, and directional uncertainty from the segmentation. We demonstrate our method on a real robot system and show that it outperforms baseline methods on grasping success.