Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Invite: QUT Games Degree Showcase


QUT’s Science and Engineering Faculty is pleased to invite you to the QUT Bachelor of Games and Interactive Entertainment (BGIE) End of Year Showcase.

Date:Friday, 31st October, 2014

Time:5:00pm – 9pm (5:30pm Proceedings Start)

Venue: The Cube, Level 4, P Block, Gardens Point Campus, QUT, 4001

RSVP:Please RSVP to Ross Brown 

Come and see demonstrations of the best polished and published games created by BGIE degree students. The show is an opportunity for you and other industry to meet our graduating students and see their outstanding work.
       
Have fun playing these new games and catch up with friends and colleagues from the industry!

Friday, August 22, 2014

Paper: Augmenting and assisting model elicitation tasks with 3D virtual world context metadata










Just had a paper I have written with Stefanie Rinderle-Ma, Simone Kriglstein and Sonja Kabicher-Fuchs accepted for COOPIS 2014.  Paper is found here.

This is the fourth paper I have had published this year with Simone, part of a productive collaboration with my Austrian colleagues.

Abstract. Accurate process model elicitation continues to be a time consuming task, requiring skill on the part of the interviewer to extract explicit and tacit process information from the interviewee. Many errors occur in this elicitation stage that would be avoided by better activity recall, more consistent specification methods and greater engagement in the elicitation process by interviewees. Theories of situated cognition indicate that interactive 3D representations of real work environments engage and prime the cognitive state of the viewer. In this paper, our major contribution is to augment a previous process elicitation methodology with virtual world context metadata, drawn from a 3D simulation of the workplace. We present a conceptual and formal approach for representing this contextual metadata, integrated into a process similarity measure that provides hints for the business analyst to use in later modelling steps. Finally, we conclude with examples from two use cases to illustrate the potential abilities of this approach.

Ross

Saturday, August 16, 2014

CFP: Interactive Entertainment 2014 - (EXTENSION to Submission Date - 31 August)

Interactive Entertainment 2014 - Fun and Games – Call For Papers

(EXTENSION to Submission Date - 31 August, 2014)
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Location: University of Newcastle, Australia
Conference Dates:  2-3 December, 2014
Paper Submissions: 31 August, 2014 (EXTENDED)


Interactive Entertainment is Australasia's longest running games and digital entertainment conference. IE2014 marks the 10th anniversary of the conference which is hosted this year by the University of Newcastle, Australia.

IE2014 welcomes scientists, designers, artists, technicians, students, industry and academics from across the spectrum. We encourage contributions from fields as diverse as computer science, social science, design, communication, media studies, music, engineering, health and mathematics. Anyone interested in the myriad of technologies and issues that impact on interactive entertainment and computer games are encouraged to come along and share their discipline's perspective on "Fun and Games".   

TOPICS
---------

·         heuristic methodologies
·         control and evaluation
·         design practices and method
·         design history
·         transmedia
·         experience measurement
·         dynamic difficulty balancing
·         core mechanics
·         discussions on narrative
·         networking models
·         game physics
·         game graphics
·         sound design
·         artificial intelligence
·         user interface design
·         serious games
·         exergaming
·         development processes
·         evaluation methodologies
·         creativity in games
·         experimental gameplay forms
·         advances in mobile and portable games
·         Virtual Reality
·         interactive simulation
·         interactive film
·         animation in games
·         history of interactive media
·         commercial concerns
·         case studies on interactive applications
·         games thinking not listed here


SUBMISSIONS
------------------
IE2014 will accept four kinds of submissions; all types of submissions will be peer reviewed published online in the ACM International Conference Proceedings. http://www.acm.org/publications/icp_series

Regular Papers (Recommended length: 7-10 pages)
All regular papers will be peer reviewed fortechnical merit, significance, clarity and relevance to interactive entertainment. Accepted papers are required to give a 15-20 minute presentation at the conference.

Short Papers (Recommended length: 3 pages)
Short papers represent novel work in progress that may not be yet as mature as regular submissions, but still represents a significant contribution to the field. All short papers will be peer reviewed for technical merit, significance, clarity and relevance to interactive entertainment. Accepted papers are required to present a poster at the conference.

Demo Submissions (Recommended length: 1 page)
Technical demonstrations show innovative and original implementations to interactive entertainment. Demo papers will be reviewed by the conference chair and the program chair forsignificance and relevance.

Exhibition Submissions (Recommended length: 1 page)
These submissions are for work which will be exhibited in the conference's dedicated space. Applicants are to submit a short write-up outlining and contextualising the work to be exhibited, including pictures. They will need to provide a clear understanding of the proposed exhibited design work and its relationship with interactive entertainment.


MORE INFORMATION
---------------------------

For more information, please visit http://ieconference.org/ie2014/ or email ieconference2014@gmail.com



------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Dr Karen Blackmore
Lecturer
School of Design, Communication and Information Technology
Room MCG18, McMullin Building
The University of Newcastle
University Drive
Callaghan NSW 2308

Ph: +61 2 492 15206
Fax: +61 2 492 15896



------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Monday, August 11, 2014

Paper Review: On the Problem of Predicting Real World Characteristics from Virtual Worlds

#Title#
On the Problem of Predicting Real World Characteristics from Virtual Worlds

#Authors#
Muhammad Aurangzeb Ahmad, Cuihua Shen, Jaideep Srivastava and Noshir Contractor

#Venue#
Predicting Real World Behaviors from Virtual World Data, 
Muhammad Aurangzeb Ahmad, Cuihua Shen, Jaideep Srivastava, Noshir Contractor Editors,
Springer Verlag

#DOI#
DOI 10.1007/978-3-319-07142-8

#Abstract#
Abstract Availability of massive amounts of data about the social and behavioral characteristics of a large subset of the population opens up new possibilities that allow researchers to not only observe people’s behaviors in a natural, rather than artificial, environment but also conduct predictive modeling of those behaviors and characteristics. Thus an emerging area of study is the prediction of real world characteristics and behaviors of people in the offline or “real” world based on their behaviors in the online virtual worlds. We explore the challenges and opportunities in the emerging field of prediction of real world characteristics based on people’s virtual world characteristics, i.e., what are the major paradigms in this field, what are the limitations in current predictive models, limitations in terms of generalizability, etc. Lastly, we also address the future challenges and avenues of research in this area.

#Comments#

They describe the ideas behind the "Mapping Principle," and that this mapping between virtual and real behaviours cannot necessarily be assume to hold for all cases.  

Representations in different worlds may change the results; not much of a problem for me due to lack of need for non-representative avatars, but may impact on fidelity of representation arguments for identification with avatars.

Configuration of the world influences the nature of the mapping, as the pvp and pve tasks may change levels of aggression or cooperation in the VW or game.

They cite the "Proteus Effect," behaviours are affected by the appearance and intended nature of the avatar.  Could this be used to empathise with your boss or underling in an organisation in BPM?!?  Could be exploited in a training manner.  Maybe it brings out perceptions of what another job entails, so that perceptions of roles can be tested.

They bring out the difference in using data to drive the notion of theorising about behaviour; reduces reliance on a priori concepts about behaviours.

They suggest to augment data logging with surveys, in order to determine other states outside of the game to be included in the modelling; straight forward but has to be said.  Remotely logging people does not provide context with regards to their behaviours.

Generalisation across virtual worlds is still an unaddressed problem.

They note that people may lie when answering surveys, which can be uncovered by log data, eg. time spent playing games.  But this is the same for every scenario, one imagines, especially with social repercussions. 

They suggest actually using the worlds before testing them; in some ways a classic case of simulating your experiment before you actually carry it out.  They suggest a minimum time of world use before the research can be published,  and suggest it should be enforced at conferences at in journals.

Case studies:

Economics - virtual world economic patterns commute to real world patterns eg. Castronova.  A black market exists for virtual money.

Epidemiology - citation of the Corrupted Blood incident in WOW.  Spread of disease was similar to human real viruses, including remote location commencement and travelling escaping people bringing the plague to the other regions.  They note that the cost of infection is trivial compared to real life, thus behaviours are different; bringing up a rationale cost benefit analysis model as a basis for action.

Deviant Clandestine Behaviours - this has a strong mapping due to social factors in being found out so to speak.  Gold farming is noted as a major example in the virtual world cases.  Some behaviours, such as thinning of social networks, have been found to be similar in virtual world and in real world gang examples.

Mentoring - mentoring networks are different from other social networks.  But there is a limited form of mapping to the real world.

They do note that the online worlds allow the testing of hypotheses that are note possible in the real world, but they may not be applicable fully to the real world, as noted in other case studies.

They finish with an interesting comparison of a theory based approach to virtual world behaviour predictive modelling, or a data driven, bottom up modelling approach, based upon data mining for correlations to particular behaviours.

They note that the mapping principle is the overarching assumption in this work, but caution is urged due to the often lack of generalisation between the mapping found in different virtual worlds.


#ImportantRefs#

15. Hall,M.,Frank,E.,Holmes,G.,Pfahringer,B.,Reutemann,P.,Witten,I.H.:TheWEKAdata mining software: an update. ACM SIGKDD Explor. Newsl. 11(1), 10–18 (2009)
16. Johnson, N.F., Xu, C., Zhao, Z., Ducheneaut, N., Yee, N., Tita, G., Hui, P.M.: Human group formation in online guilds and offline gangs driven by a common team dynamic. Phys. Rev. E. 79(6), 066117 (2009)

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Info: 3D Virtual Worlds to Save Qld Wallabies!

Attached is a picture of me wearing an Occulus Rift wandering around the (virtual) hills of South-east Queensland. In collaboration with Prof. Kerrie Mengersen@QUT, Justine Murray@CSIRO and Prof Peter Bruza@QUT, we have developed a prototype tool for eliciting expert knowledge from environmental managers using elevation models of natural environments.


Research hypothesis is that the Bayesian wallaby population models will be of a better quality if extracted with greater situational information provided by the interactive virtual world. Normally the process is performed with 2D GIS systems.

Will be testing the prototype soon with environmental experts. Thanks to Kerrie Mengersen, Michael Rosemann and Peter Bruza for the support.  Thanks to the bods at QUT VISER for the usual Star Wars equipment.

BTW, the prototype has been developed by a third year QUT games undergraduate RA, Wesley Heard.

Ross

Sunday, August 3, 2014

CFP: Visual Computing (ISVC'14) - Call for Papers, Las Vegas, NV

CALL for PAPERS

10th International Symposium on Visual Computing (ISVC'14)
December 8-10, 2014
Monte Carlo Resort & Casino
Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
http://www.isvc.net

ISVC provides a common forum for researchers, scientists, engineers and
practitioners to present their latest research findings, ideas,
developments and applications in visual computing. We seek papers
contributing to the state of the art and practice in any of the four
central areas of visual computing: (1) computer vision, (2) computer
graphics, (3) virtual reality, and (4) visualization.  Of particular
interest are papers that combine technologies from two or more areas.

**** Important Dates
Paper submissions               August 23, 2014
Notification of acceptance      October 7, 2014
Final camera ready paper        October 31, 2014
Advance Registration            October 31, 2014
ISVC'14 Symposium               December 8-10, 2014

***** Keynote Speakers
Arun Ross, Michigan State University, USA
Melanie Tory, Univ of Victoria, Canada
Rama Chellapa, Univ of Maryland, USA
Bernd Frohlich, Bauhaus Univ, Weimar, Germany
Luc Vincent, Google, USA
Gopi Meenakshisundaram, Univ of California at Irvine, USA

**** Special Tracks
1. Computational Bioimaging
2. 3D Mapping, Modeling and Surface Reconstruction
3. Tracking for Human Activity Monitoring
4. Unmanned Autonomous Systems
5. Intelligent Computing and Cyber Security
6. Multimedia Forgery Detection
7. Big Data Computer Vision
8. Unconstrained Biometrics: Challenges and Applications
9. Intelligent Transportation Systems
10. Visual Perception and Robotic Systems


(Area 1) Computer Vision Chairs:
         Kambhamettu Chandra, University of Delaware, USA
         El Choubassi Maha, Intel, USA

(Area 2) Computer Graphics Chairs:
         Zhigang Deng, University of Houston, USA
         Carlson Mark, DreamWorks Animation, USA

(Area 3) Virtual Reality Chairs:
         McMahan, Ryan, University of Texas at Dallas, USA
         Jerald, Jason, NextGen Interactions, USA

(Area 4) Visualization Chairs:
         Zhang, Hui, Indiana University, USA
         Drucker, Steven, Microsoft, USA

**** Submission Procedure

Papers submitted to ISVC'14 must not have been previously published and
must not be currently under consideration for publication elsewhere. A
complete paper should be submitted in camera-ready format. The length
should match that intended for final publication. The page limit is 12
pages. In submitting a paper the author(s) agree that, upon acceptance,
they will prepare the final manuscript in time for inclusion into the
proceedings and will present the paper at the symposium.

Significantly extended and revised versions of selected papers will be
considered for publication in a special issue of the International Journal
on Artificial Intelligence Tools (IJAIT) (ISI/SCIE indexed) and the
Computers and Graphics journal(ISI/SCIE indexed). Moreover,
significantly extended and revised versions of selected papers from
the "Computational Bioimaging" special track will be considered for a
special issue of the Computer Methods in Biomechanics and Biomedical
Engineering: Imaging & Visualization journal.

A "best paper" award ($500) will be sponsored by MERL. The symposium's proceedings will be published by Springer-Verlag in Lecture Notes in Computer Science.


ISVC'14 Organizing Committee

CFP: Interactive Entertainment 2014 - Fun and Games – Call For Papers


Interactive Entertainment 2014 - Fun and Games – Call For Papers
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Location: University of Newcastle, Australia
Conference Dates:  2-3 December, 2014
Paper Submissions: 16 August, 2014
http://ieconference.org/ie2014/
Interactive Entertainment is Australasia's longest running games and digital entertainment conference. IE2014 marks the 10th anniversary of the conference which is hosted this year by the University of Newcastle, Australia.
IE2014 welcomes scientists, designers, artists, technicians, students, industry and academics from across the spectrum. We encourage contributions from fields as diverse as computer science, social science, design, communication, media studies, music, engineering, health and mathematics. Anyone interested in the myriad of technologies and issues that impact on interactive entertainment and computer games are encouraged to come along and share their discipline's perspective on "Fun and Games".   
TOPICS
---------
·         heuristic methodologies
·         control and evaluation
·         design practices and method
·         design history
·         transmedia
·         experience measurement
·         dynamic difficulty balancing
·         core mechanics
·         discussions on narrative
·         networking models
·         game physics
·         game graphics
·         sound design
·         artificial intelligence
·         user interface design
·         serious games
·         exergaming
·         development processes
·         evaluation methodologies
·         creativity in games
·         experimental gameplay forms
·         advances in mobile and portable games
·         Virtual Reality
·         interactive simulation
·         interactive film
·         animation in games
·         history of interactive media
·         commercial concerns
·         case studies on interactive applications
·         games thinking not listed here
SUBMISSIONS
------------------
IE2014 will accept four kinds of submissions; all types of submissions will be peer reviewed published online in the ACM International Conference Proceedings. http://www.acm.org/publications/icp_series
Regular Papers (Recommended length: 7-10 pages)
All regular papers will be peer reviewed for technical merit, significance, clarity and relevance to interactive entertainment. Accepted papers are required to give a 15-20 minute presentation at the conference.
Short Papers (Recommended length: 3 pages)
Short papers represent novel work in progress that may not be yet as mature as regular submissions, but still represents a significant contribution to the field. All short papers will be peer reviewed for technical merit, significance, clarity and relevance to interactive entertainment. Accepted papers are required to present a poster at the conference.
Demo Submissions (Recommended length: 1 page)
Technical demonstrations show innovative and original implementations to interactive entertainment. Demo papers will be reviewed by the conference chair and the program chair for significance and relevance.
Exhibition Submissions (Recommended length: 1 page)
These submissions are for work which will be exhibited in the conference's dedicated space. Applicants are to submit a short write-up outlining and contextualising the work to be exhibited, including pictures. They will need to provide a clear understanding of the proposed exhibited design work and its relationship with interactive entertainment.
MORE INFORMATION
---------------------------
For more information, please visit http://ieconference.org/ie2014/ or email ieconference2014@gmail.com