Grounding Language with Visual Affordances over Unstructured Data


Recent works have shown that Large Language Models (LLMs) can be applied to ground natural language to a wide variety of robot skills. However, in practice, learning multi-task, language-conditioned robotic skills typically requires large-scale data collection and frequent human intervention to reset the environment or help correcting the current policies. In this work, we propose a novel approach to efficiently learn general-purpose language-conditioned robot skills from unstructured, offline and reset-free data in the real world by exploiting a self-supervised visuo-lingual affordance model, which requires annotating as little as 1% of the total data with language. We evaluate our method in extensive experiments both in simulated and real-world robotic tasks, achieving state-of-the-art performance on the challenging CALVIN benchmark and learning over 25 distinct visuomotor manipulation tasks with a single policy in the real world. We find that when paired with LLMs to break down abstract natural language instructions into subgoals via few-shot prompting, our method is capable of completing long-horizon, multi-tier tasks in the real world, while requiring an order of magnitude less data than previous approaches. Code and videos are available at

In IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation 2023