Artificial Intelligence for Experience Management
I study Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the context of interactive environments: training simulations, video games, or any social situation. Experience management is the task of dynamically changing people's experiences (which happen in interactive environments) toward affecting them in some desired way. Sometimes this desire comes from the manager, like when a parent moves a sharp object away from their young child to keep the child safe. When managers are programmed using AI techniques, the desired effect is specified by a human designer, like when the creators of Left4Dead decided that players' emotions should follow a certain pattern over time during play. Compared to the alternative of setting and checking flags in scripts, using an AI manager allows designers to exercise their craft in a way that is more procedural, and so less demanding of extensive manual labour. AI managers can also learn about each person while their experience is underway, and then use this information to better manage that experience.