Interactive Evolution of Camouflage
Game Research and Technology
Boids (simulated flocking)
My interests center around using procedural models (computer programs) to simulate complex natural phenomenon. These models can aide scientific understanding of the natural system. They also allow us to recreate and control the phenomenon for use in animation, games and the arts.
Much of my work involves writing software to simulate various types of human and animal behavior. These programs control the actions of autonomous characters in virtual worlds. I started by simulating bird flocks and related group behaviors. That approach was generalized to other kinds of goal directed steering behaviors. Most recently I have applied these ideas to models of emergent teamwork in crowds, such as collective construction based on stigmergy, as seen in social insects.
I am also interested in using evolutionary computation to design procedural models, such as for behavioral control and texture synthesis. A key aspect of this is the design of the criteria for evolution of subtle properties that are hard to define. My recent work in this area involves modeling the evolution of camouflage in nature.