Places Everyone: Creating an Animated Background of Human Activity
December 7, 2009
Speaker: Jan M. Allbeck (George Mason University)
Time: Monday, December 7, 2 PM
Location: Babbio 221
Host: Philippos Mordohai
Creating virtual scenarios that simulate a human population with typical and varied behaviors can be an overwhelming task. In addition to modeling the environment and characters, tagging the environment with semantic data, and creating motions for the characters, the simulation designer also needs to create character profiles for the population and link these character traits to appropriate behaviors to be performed at appropriate times and places during the simulation. At present, simulations either have a limited number of character profiles or are meticulously hand scripted. I'll describe an architecture, called CAROSA (Crowds with Aleatoric, Reactive, Opportunistic, and Scheduled Actions), that facilitates the creation of heterogeneous populations for simulations by using Microsoft Outlook®, a Parameterized Action Representation (PAR), and crowd simulator. The CAROSA framework enables the specification and control of actions for more realistic background characters in virtual worlds such as buildings and cities, links human characteristics and high level behaviors to animated graphical depictions, and relieves some of the burden in creating and animating heterogeneous 3D animated human populations.
I just started as an Assistant Professor at George Mason University in Fairfax, VA. Last spring I completed a Ph.D. from the Department of Computer and Information Science, which is a part of the School of Engineering and Applied Science at the University of Pennsylvania. My advisor is Dr. Norman I. Badler. I was also Associate Director of the Center for Human Modeling and Simulation, where I coordinated and participated in the research projects affiliated with HMS as well as coordinating the operational aspects of the lab facility. I have Bachelors degrees in Mathematics and Computer Science from Bloomsburg University and a Masters degree in Computer and Information Science from Penn. I've had the great opportunity to explore many aspects of computer graphics, but am most drawn to research at the crossroads of animation, artificial intelligence, and psychology in the simulation of virtual humans. My current research focuses on the creation and simulation of functional crowds.