Summerbase #8 – Artificial interaction in VR – Virtual Agents

Datum: 10 augustus 2018 Geschreven door: In:

Join us for this summerbase event when we dive into a fantastic tech-crossover between AI and VR !

How can AI offer psychological support ?

AI is already helping us in multiple ways on a professional and daily basis.

But how far have systems come in realtime adapting virtual environments on human emotional state e.g. measure the level of fear and do real-time adjustment in virtual world? And how is all this applicable to VR ?

For a start research on virtual reality exposure therapy (VRET) has demonstrated good treatment efficacy with regards to several anxiety disorders. Yet, there is lack of knowledge about the value of integrating interaction between clients and virtual humans in VRET. Such interaction might prove effective in treating psychological complaints that involve social interactions, such as social anxiety… and this is why we have invited Dr. Willem-Paul Brinkman from Delft University

His primary research interests are human-computer interaction, behavior change support systems, specifically eHealth systems including virtual reality therapy systems, and virtual health agents.

He and his team has conducted several proof-of-concept pilot studies aimed at examining levels of the sense of presence and anxiety during exposure to virtual environments.

These involve social interaction with virtual humans and using different virtual reality displays.

Tests include:
– Examining the social dialogue situation, and the dialogue feedback responses (negative or positive) between a human and a virtual character
– An experiment with 24 participants was conducted where the emotions of a virtual human were manipulated during both the listening and speaking phase of the dialogue

– People perceptions of automatically created audience behavior

– Virtual health agent asking people about past experiences

His ultimate objective is to establish an autonomous eHealth system with a digital psychologist that can assist individuals in achieving a broad set of behavior change goals. Ranging from overcoming mental illness to lifestyle modification to cope with a chronic illness.

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"To begin with, Virtual Reality is a part of computer science and it represents a new approach to computer science. Instead of treating the computer as a box that's out there that is supposed to accomplish something, you put a human being in the center and say, "Let's look at the human being closely. Let's see how people perceive the world or how they act. Let's design a computer to fit very closely around them, like a glove, you might say. Let's match up the technology to exactly what people are good at.""
Jaron Lanier, 1992