An Invisible Salient Landmark Approach to Locating Pedestrians for Predesigned Business Card Route of Pedestrian Navigation

Sensors (Basel). 2018 Sep 19;18(9):3164. doi: 10.3390/s18093164.


Visual landmarks are important navigational aids for research into and design of applications for last mile pedestrian navigation, e.g., business card route of pedestrian navigation. The business card route is a route between a fixed origin (e.g., campus entrance) to a fixed destination (e.g., office). The changing characteristics and combinations of various sensors' data in smartphones or navigation devices can be viewed as invisible salient landmarks for business card route of pedestrian navigation. However, the advantages of these invisible landmarks have not been fully utilized, despite the prevalence of GPS and digital maps. This paper presents an improvement to the Dempster⁻Shafer theory of evidence to find invisible landmarks along predesigned pedestrian routes, which can guide pedestrians by locating them without using digital maps. This approach is suitable for use as a "business card" route for newcomers to find their last mile destinations smoothly by following precollected sensor data along a target route. Experiments in real pedestrian navigation environments show that our proposed approach can sense the location of pedestrians automatically, both indoors and outdoors, and has smaller positioning errors than purely GPS and Wi-Fi positioning approaches in the study area. Consequently, the proposed methodology is appropriate to guide pedestrians to unfamiliar destinations, such as a room in a building or an exit from a park, with little dependency on geographical information.

Keywords: Dempster-Shafer theory of evidence; landmark; pedestrian route; route guidance; sensor signal; smartphone navigation.