Collaboration with agents in VR environments

Virtual reality is gaining on importance in many fields – scientific simulation, training, therapy and also more and more in entertainment. All these applications require the human user to interact with virtual worlds inhabited by intelligent characters and to solve simulated or real problems. This thesis will present an integrated approach to simulated problem solving in virtual reality environments, with the emphasis on teamwork and the ability to control the simulations. A simulation framework satisfying these goals will be presented. A unified approach to the representation of semantic information in virtual environments based on predicate calculus will be introduced, including the representation of the world state, action semantics and basic axioms holding in the simulated world. Afterwards, the focus will be on the collaboration model based on task delegation and facilitator-centric architecture. A simple but efficient facilitator design will be presented. The issues of the collaborative problem solving will be examined. A new technique using propositional (STRIPS-like) planning with delegated actions and object-specific planning will be described. A control technique for virtual characters/objects will be detailed, enabling run-time exchange of control and control sharing over a virtual entity between multiple autonomous agents and/or human users. Finally, a set of case studies will be shown, illustrating the possible applications of the techniques developed and described in this dissertation.

    Thèse École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne EPFL, n° 3350 (2005)
    Section d'informatique
    Faculté informatique et communications
    Institut des systèmes informatiques et multimédias
    Laboratoire de réalité virtuelle
    Jury: Boi Faltings, Pascal Fua, Anton Nijholt, Paolo Petta

    Public defense: 2005-11-15


    Record created on 2005-08-31, modified on 2017-05-12

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