Robot navigation over large areas inevitably has to rely on maps of the environment. The standard manner in which such maps are defined is through geometry, e.g. through traversability grid maps or through a division of the environment into free-space and obstacle-space. In this paper, we combine certain aspects of the geometric maps, through the notion of distinctive places, with a topological description of how these places are related. What is novel is the idea that the adjacency relation is defined by the existence of a control law that drives the robot between topologically connected places. Moreover, these maps can be automatically constructed based on the premise that the nodes correspond to places associated with a hightened control activity.
"Motion Description Language-Based Topological Maps for Robot Navigation." Commun. Inf. Syst. 8 (2) 171 - 184, 2008.