This seminar will provide an overview of the types and uses of Intelligent virtual agents. Intelligent virtual agents (IVAs) have been a growing area of research within the field of Artificial Intelligence in the past 20 years. An IVA is a piece of software, generally considered to be autonomous in some way that imitates the behaviour of a human or animal and is embodied within a virtual environment.
A primary aim in the field of virtual agents is the creation of believable characters that are useful in their situated paradigm (e.g. games, narratives, education, assistive computing, etc.). There is a significant body of work in the area of believable characters which may be known as pedagogical agents, embodied conversational agents, artificial companions, talking heads, empathic or listening agents depending on their function, level of sophistication or the particular research focus such as emotion and appraisal systems or language technology.
The talk will provide an overview of the field, including my research concerning IVAs and memory, emotions and collaborative learning for applications such as debriefing and reminiscing, border security officer training, scientific inquiry and science education, real estate assistance, museum guidance, behaviour change, empowerment and adherence to treatment advice.