Real-Time Virtual Humans

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Center for Human Modeling and Simulation
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Virtual humans
human modeling
computer animation
virtual reality
autonomous agents
and action
computer graphics.
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The last few years have seen great maturation in the computation speed and control methods needed to portray 30 virtual humans suitable for real interactive applications. We first describe the state of the art, then focus on the particular approach taken at the University of Pennsylvania with the Jack system. Various aspects of real-time virtual humans are considered, such as appearance and motion, interactive control, autonomous action, gesture, attention, locomotion, and multiple individuals. The underlying architecture consists of a sense-control-act structure that permits reactive behaviors to be locally adaptive to the environment, and a PaT-Net parallel finite-state machine controller that can be used to drive virtual humans through complex tasks. We then argue for a deep connection between language and animation and describe current efforts in linking them through two systems: the Jack Presenter and the JackMOO extension to lambdaM00. Finally, we outline a Parameterized Action Representation for mediating between language instructions and animated actions.

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Copyright 1997 IEEE. Reprinted from IEEE Workshop on Non-Rigid and Articulated Motion 1997, June 1997, pages 28-36. This material is posted here with permission of the IEEE. Such permission of the IEEE does not in any way imply IEEE endorsement of any of the University of Pennsylvania's products or services. Internal or personal use of this material is permitted. However, permission to reprint/republish this material for advertising or promotional purposes or for creating new collective works for resale or redistribution must be obtained from the IEEE by writing to By choosing to view this document, you agree to all provisions of the copyright laws protecting it.
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