Habitat: A Platform for Embodied AI Research

Manolis Savva, Abhishek Kadian, Oleksandr Maksymets, Yili Zhao, Erik Wijmans, Bhavana Jain, Julian Straub, Jia Liu, Vladlen Koltun, Jitendra Malik, Devi Parikh, Dhruv Batra; Proceedings of the IEEE/CVF International Conference on Computer Vision (ICCV), 2019, pp. 9339-9347


We present Habitat, a platform for research in embodied artificial intelligence (AI). Habitat enables training embodied agents (virtual robots) in highly efficient photorealistic 3D simulation. Specifically, Habitat consists of: (i) Habitat-Sim: a flexible, high-performance 3D simulator with configurable agents, sensors, and generic 3D dataset handling. Habitat-Sim is fast -- when rendering a scene from Matterport3D, it achieves several thousand frames per second (fps) running single-threaded, and can reach over 10,000 fps multi-process on a single GPU. (ii) Habitat-API: a modular high-level library for end-to-end development of embodied AI algorithms -- defining tasks (e.g., navigation, instruction following, question answering), configuring, training, and benchmarking embodied agents. These large-scale engineering contributions enable us to answer scientific questions requiring experiments that were till now impracticable or 'merely' impractical. Specifically, in the context of point-goal navigation: (1) we revisit the comparison between learning and SLAM approaches from two recent works and find evidence for the opposite conclusion -- that learning outperforms SLAM if scaled to an order of magnitude more experience than previous investigations, and (2) we conduct the first cross-dataset generalization experiments train, test x Matterport3D, Gibson for multiple sensors blind, RGB, RGBD, D and find that only agents with depth (D) sensors generalize across datasets. We hope that our open-source platform and these findings will advance research in embodied AI.

Related Material

[pdf] [supp] [video]
author = {Savva, Manolis and Kadian, Abhishek and Maksymets, Oleksandr and Zhao, Yili and Wijmans, Erik and Jain, Bhavana and Straub, Julian and Liu, Jia and Koltun, Vladlen and Malik, Jitendra and Parikh, Devi and Batra, Dhruv},
title = {Habitat: A Platform for Embodied AI Research},
booktitle = {Proceedings of the IEEE/CVF International Conference on Computer Vision (ICCV)},
month = {October},
year = {2019}