Behavior generation for interpersonal coordination with virtual humans : on specifying, scheduling and realizing multimodal virtual human behavior


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Welbergen, Herwin van (2011) Behavior generation for interpersonal coordination with virtual humans : on specifying, scheduling and realizing multimodal virtual human behavior. thesis.

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Abstract:Interactive virtual humans, are used in many educational and entertain-
ment settings. They have become very complex pieces of software. Building
a state-of-the-art virtual human entails re-implementing several pieces of ex-
isting work. The SAIBA initiative (consisting of several leading researchers
in the interactive virtual human field) designed a framework that allows
researchers to share components of virtual humans more easily.
Many techniques achieve real-time animation for virtual humans. These
techniques differ in the trade-off they offer between the control that can be
exerted over the motion, the motion naturalness, and the required calcula-
tion time. The mixed dynamics technique proposed in this thesis combines
the physical naturalness provided by physically realistic animation with the
control provided by procedural animation.
Traditionally, interaction with social agents was designed using turn-
based `sender-receiver' interaction paradigms, in which the user and the so-
cial agent take turns to send (encode) and receive (decode) meaning carrying
messages that travel across channels between them. Interactions between
humans however is characterized by continuous interpersonal coordination
of attitudes, beliefs and behavior. Natural interaction requires a continu-
ous interaction paradigm, where actors perceive acts and speech of others
continuously, and where actors can act continuously, simultaneously and
therefore overlapping in time.
This thesis presents \Elckerlyc", a SAIBA BML Realizer for generating
multimodal verbal and nonverbal behavior for virtual humans. The main
design characteristics of Elckerlyc are that (1) it is designed specifically for
continuous interaction with tight coordination between the behavior of a
virtual human and that of its interaction partner; (2) it provides an ad-
justable trade-off between the control and naturalness offered by different animation paradigms (e.g. procedural body animation and physical body
animation; MPEG-4 facial animation and morph-based facial animation), al-
lowing the execution of the paradigms simultaneously; and (3) it is designed
to be highly modular and extensible and allows adaptations and extensions
of the capabilities of the virtual human, without having to make invasive
modifications to Elckerlyc itself.
Elckerlyc is employed in several virtual human applications. Several of
its design features were motivated, fine-tuned and finally demonstrated by
this `field' experience of Elckerlyc.
Item Type:Thesis
Additional information:SIKS Dissertation Series No. 2011-24
Faculty:
Electrical Engineering, Mathematics and Computer Science (EEMCS)
Research Group:
Link to this item:http://purl.utwente.nl/publications/77917
Official URL:http://dx.doi.org/10.3990/1.9789036532334
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