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Trainees create a novel virtual environment

Research Achievements

Trainees create a novel virtual environment

Students in the IGERT-created lab course Interdisciplinary Methods in Perceptual Science (advised by IGERT faculty J. Feldman) created a novel virtual environment populated by intelligent autonomous agents. Goals were to create model-driven autonomous agents capable of intelligent behavior and to investigate human interpretation of that behavior. Agents explored an environment containing food and obstacles while collecting food and competing with other agents for survival. In evolutionary simulations, agents evolved towards increasingly rational behavior. Human observers were generally able to deduce what an agent was "thinking" based on its actions. This virtual environment serves as a platform for investigating problems at the interface of computer science and perceptual psychology, including: visual interpretation of dynamic displays, population dynamics of artificial perceptual agents, and computational procedures for interpretation of intentional action.