IQs for Avatars: Testing and Editing Intelligent Agents for Training

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency
Contract: W31P4Q-04-C-R220
Agency Tracking Number: 04SB1-0151
Amount: $99,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: SB041-009
Solicitation Number: 2004.1
Solicitation Year: 2004
Award Year: 2004
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2004-06-21
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2005-01-06
Small Business Information
5025 Burnet Suite 100, Austin, TX, 78756
DUNS: 140705489
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Michael Sellers
 President, Lead Designer
 (512) 419-9001
Business Contact
 Craig Fryar
Title: VP, Business Development
Phone: (512) 848-8488
Research Institution
Military training systems require better computer-based modeling and simulation than is currently available. Key to such enhanced training is the use of computer-generated non-player characters (NPCs), or "avatars," exhibiting believable and culturally relevant behaviors in real-time training scenarios. Non-technical personnel must be able to generate such NPCs easily, either as individuals or groups, to fit training goals. Online Alchemy proposes to design and produce a working technology prototype for creating believable NPCs. This proposal focuses on creating NPCs with distinct personalities, goals, relationships, and in particular emergent nuanced emotions. Our technology is based on the "Five Factor" model of personality combined with a motivational and emotional model built on Maslovian and CogAff models and BDI architectural principles. This results in configurable NPCs that exhibit believable behaviors and emotions across a wide range of interactions. This proposal does not include natural language or advanced rendering technologies, but is compatible with work being done in these areas. During Phase I we will also specify methods for assessing the believability of the NPCs within a training context. The assessment itself will be part of Phase II, and will include Institutional Review Board (IRB) compliance for experimentation using human subjects.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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