from the not-your-parent-hand-puppets dept.
Roland Piquepaille writes "Videogame creators are heavily using software to animate objects or characters without reprogramming them between two scenes. Now, game designers from the University of Southern California (USC) have developed 'Social Puppet,' a computer engine to 'help soldiers learn unfamiliar languages by interacting with animated characters.' For this project, financed by DARPA, the researchers have used their expertise in previous videogames used by the armed forces, such as 'Tactical Iraqi.' But previous games were focused on teaching language and customs while Social Puppet is giving on-screen characters human non-verbal communication behaviors."
... when fits of creativity run strong, more than one programmer or writer
has been known to abandon the desktop for the more spacious floor.
-- Fred Brooks