Controlling the Behavior of Virtual Characters on Cognitive Level

P. Dannenmann and H. Barthel (Germany)


Cognitive Characters, Character Animation, Action Plan ning, Animation Generation


The animation of virtual human characters using tradi tional keyframing techniques is a cumbersome and time consuming process. We present an approach to facili tate this process by utilizing so-called cognitive characters. These characters govern what they know, how that knowl edge is acquired, and how it can be used to plan actions. On this basis we present a technique to incorporate the "Cog nitive Modeling Language" (CML) into an animation sys tem to describe a set of actions the character is able to per form and the character's high level goals on a logical level. The action planning for the character is performed based on these logical descriptions in a STRIPS-like manner. Addi tionally, the character's knowledge about its environment is taken into account for the planning process. As a result we get a sequence of the character's actions that enable it to fulfill the specified goals. This action sequence is finally used to automatically generate a corresponding animation from animation fragments that are smoothly joined to get the complete animation sequence.

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