In this paper, we discuss scripting tools that aim at facilitating the design of Web-based interactions with animated characters capable of affective communication. Specifically, two systems are developed. The SCREAM system is a scripting tool that enables authors to create emotionally and socially appropriate responses of animated characters. Content authors may design the mental make-up of a character by declaring a variety of parameters and behaviors relevant to affective communication and obtain quantified emotional reactions that can be input to an animation engine. While the default operations of a character's "mind" are based on psychological and sociological research, authors may easily modify and extend its rule set. In order to facilitate high-level scripting and connectivity with other Web-based animated agent systems, the tool is written in a lightweight JAVA-based PROLOG system and JAVA. Connectivity is demonstrated by interfacing SCREAM with our second system, MPML, an XML-style markup language that allows to control and coordinate the multi-modal appearance of synthetic characters. Affective communication with animated characters is illustrated by the implementation of a Web-based casino scenario.
ASJC Scopus subject areas