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Think fast – your games console is about to get a lot smarter

  • 14 November, 2005 14:55

<p>Soon the aliens and monsters will not only outgun you, they're likely to be outthinking you as well. That's the brave new world of artificial intelligence in gaming, a big topic for next week's Second Australiasian Conference on Interactive Entertainment in Sydney.</p>
<p>The IE2005 conference, at the University of Technology, Sydney, is bringing together high-powered researchers from Australia and around the world to discuss how computing advances are about to revolutionise fun and games.</p>
<p>"Developments in computer gaming are just part of it," said Conference Chair Dr Yusuf Pisan of UTS, whose own research is about developing characters that aren't simply the pawns of the player.</p>
<p>"Research in artificial intelligence and interactive entertainment is on the verge of producing whole new forms of entertainment, like interactive television and interactive stories.</p>
<p>"We're within in sight of creating interactive narratives with intelligent, AI-controlled characters. That means in not too long you could be able to buy a package that, for instance, lets you play one of the cast in your favourite soap.</p>
<p>"Along with that is a revival of the 'virtual reality' concept, and this time the technology will be able to live up to the original promise."</p>
<p>One of the developments that will be showcased at the conference is the RAGE virtual reality engine developed by researchers at Charles Sturt University, which overlays computer-generated information on real-world game play.</p>
<p>Other presenters will look at issues including giving players more control of the environment in multiplayer games and a crucial low-tech element of successful entertainment of all kinds, story development.</p>
<p>Invited speakers include:
· Games designer, educator and writer Tracy Fullerton, Co-Director of the new Electronic Arts Game Innovation Lab at the University of Southern California (USC)
· Mark Pesce, co-creator of the first 3D interface to the internet and the founder of the Interactive Media Program at USC's School of Cinema-Television
· Stacey Spiegel, Founder, President and CEO of Canadian technology company I-mmersion, an internationally renowned artist-cum-visionary in the world of interactive entertainment and education
· Michael Young, assistant professor in the Computer Science Department at North Carolina State University and co-founder and conference chair of the recent First Conference on Artificial Intelligence and Interactive Digital Entertainment (AIIDE 2005)</p>
<p>IE2005 is being held from Wednesday 23 November until Friday 25 November on the Haymarket campus of University of Technology, Sydney (corner of Quay St and Ultimo Road). A "Game On" event will be held at the Powerhouse Museum on the November 24 as part of the conference.
<p>Further Information:
Dr Yusuf Pisan, Ph (02) 9514 4478
Anders Tychsen, 0410 768 711,
Terry Clinton
Media Officer, Media Branch
Marketing and Communication Unit
University of Technology, Sydney
PO Box 123 Broadway
NSW 2007 Australia
Tel +61 2 9514 1623 Fax +61 2 9514 1616
Mob 0419 293 261
UTS Experts: online at
U: magazine online at</p>

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