Recent Submissions

  • Videogame Based Learning and the Problem of Gender Equity: Exemplifying an Androgynous Approach to Developing Computer Science E-Learning Games in Higher Education

    Nte, Sol (University of Wolverhampton, School of Computing and Information Technology, 2008)
    Several authors have considered those virtual spaces in which videogames take place as being gendered and videogames themselves as gender specific (e.g. Jenkins, 1999; Subrahmanyam & Greenfield, 1994; Hartmann & Klimmt, 2006). Videogames are often considered to be an entry path into computer literacy for young people (Greenfield & Cocking, 1996; Kiesler et Al. 1985), if this is the case then to some degree first year undergraduate computer literacy is likely to be informed by videogame experiences. Videogames can be considered to be one of the most “engaging intellectual pastimes that we have invented” (Prensky, 2004) which suggests successful videogames as a useful model for developing sound E-Learning applications (Ebner & Holzinger 2007) . However since E-Learning must be careful to avoid gender bias in the presentation of learning resources, any adoption of a videogame development model must undergo a process of “ungendering” wherein game models are analysed in terms of gender equity and suitably corrected. An actively androgynous “games for gamers” not specific genders (Subrahmanyam & Greenfield, 1999) approach is proposed and exemplified to consider how the game developer can avoid producing learning games that have some form of gender bias in the degree to which they are effective. This paper examines the preparatory theoretical work in the development of a pilot study that employs an androgynous software approach to avoid those effects of gendering originating in videogames which can negatively affect games based E-Learning. The analysis is presented from a software development perspective and documents the theoretical considerations that led to the development of the “Class Solitaire” demo - a version of the popular “solitaire” videogame designed to teach java subclassing to first year undergraduates.
  • A.I. Techniques for Modelling Anger in Emotional Agents

    Slater, Stuart; Moreton, Robert; Buckley, Kevan (University of Wolverhampton, School of Computing and Information Technology, 2008)
    The research presented here, attempts to review a range of techniques commonly categorized under the umbrella of artificial intelligence (A.I.) that could be applied when developing agents with emotions in a range of applications. The paper focuses on anger (and its related emotions), an emotion strongly linked with aggression which of course forms the basis of many computer games where killing or attacking other players or in-game agents is often central to the game’s purpose. The paper begins with a psychology focused review of anger and its related emotions, before presenting techniques to encode some of these elements using Finite State Machines and Fuzzy Logic.
  • An Interactive Educational Game For Children in Education

    Mehdi, Qasim; Salim, Aly; Walters, Kristy (University of Wolverhampton, School of Computing and Information Technology, 2008)
    This paper presents an interactive educational game for Primary School children studying KEY Stage Two History. This game is designed specifically for children to support their continuing studies and to enhance their knowledge and memory retention. The work involves the investigation into Multimedia Design Methodologies and Instructional Systems Design (ISD) Models to support the development of the Instructional Multimedia Model (IMM) in order to provide a structured approach to the development of Interactive Educational Games. In this work, the development process of the interactive educational game will be outlined together with examples. This development is based on a model tailored for an educational multimedia application development which combines ISD and multimedia disciplines contributes to the success of the resulting application. The paper will discuss how each phase has an influence upon the next and the pedagogical factors which the model takes into account work in line with those required for Multimedia Design.
  • Suitability of MANET Protocols for Heterogeneous Mobile Devices Communication in Gaming and Multimedia

    Salim, Aly; Mehdi, Qasim (University of Wolverhampton, School of Computing and Information Technology, 2008)
    The improvement and development of MANET protocols has been widely researched in order to bring about new technology with the rapidly developing field. More emphasis has been placed on development of protocols with some improvements focused on one issue in MANETs (ECMANSI, MANSI, ZRP, DVMRP) than working on all round MANET that would significantly tackle most if not all issues with MANET protocols so far (FLIP). However, there has also been more emphasis on development of non demanding applications that are not included multiplayer gaming and real-time multimedia content rich streaming applications. This paper looks at the use of mobile devices in gaming and multimedia rich applications. It proposes a protocol, which is in development that offers better efficiency, reliability, robustness and adaptability of wireless communication.
  • An interactive speech interface for virtual characters in dynamic environments

    Mehdi, Qasim; Zeng, Xin; Gough, Norman (2004)
    In this paper, we propose a new improvement to our 3D Virtual Story Environment System (3DVSE) by adding a real-time animation with voice synthesis. The new system offers a flexible and easy way to generate an interactive 3D virtual Environment (3DVE) as compared to traditional 3D packages. It enables the user to control and interact with the virtual characters via speech instructions so that the characters can respond to the commands in real time. This system has the potential, if combined with artificial intelligence, to act as a dialogue interface for believable agents that have many applications such as computer games, and intelligent multimedia applications. In this system, the agent can talk and listen to fellow agents and human users.
  • From visual semantic parameterization to graphic visualization

    Zeng, Xin; Mehdi, Qasim; Gough, Norman (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), 2005)
    Visualizing natural language description is a difficult and complex task. When dealing with the process of generating images from natural language descriptions, we firstly should consider the real world and find out what key visual information can be extracted from the sentences which represents the most fundament concepts in both virtual and real environments. In this paper, we present the result of a prototype system called 3DSV (3D Story Visualiser) that generates a virtual scene by using simplified story-based descriptions. In particular, we describe the methodology used to parameterize the visual and describable words into XML formatted data structure. Then we discuss how to interpret the parameterized data and create an interactive real-time 3D virtual environment.
  • Shape of the Story: Story Visualization Techniques

    Zeng, Xin; Mehdi, Qasim; Gough, Norman (YLEM, 2005)
    The article explores the potential of incorporating knowledge of human-to-human interaction to story visualization technology by using natural language processing and 3D computer graphic techniques. This approach generates an interactive 3D Virtual Story Environment (3DVSE) based on simplified story-based natural language input allowing the manipulation and modification of properties of the environment in real time. This paper proposes a system that would enable non-technical creative writers to render characters and scenes that are normally created by graphics specialists. i.e. allowing artists to interact with science and computer technology with ease.
  • Sound and Immersion in the First-Person Shooter

    Grimshaw, Mark (University of Wolverhampton, School of Computing and Information Technology, 2007)
    One of the aims of modern First-Person Shooter (FPS) design is to provide an immersive experience to the player. This paper examines the role of sound in enabling such immersion and argues that even in ‘realism’ FPS games, it may be achieved sonically through a focus on caricature rather than realism. The paper utilizes and develops previous work in which a conceptual framework for the design and analysis of run and gun FPS sound is developed and the notion of the relationship between player and FPS soundscape as an acoustic ecology is put forward (Grimshaw and Schott 2007a; Grimshaw and Schott 2007b). Some problems of sound practice and sound reproduction in the game are highlighted and a conceptual solution is proposed.
  • Federated-Distributed Simulation of Rigid Bodies in Computer Games

    Kumar, Pawan; Mehdi, Qasim (The University of Wolverhampton, School of Computing and Information Technology, 2007)
    In this paper we detail our prototype rigid bodies simulation environment that was developed for testing and evaluation of federated simulation development kit (FDK) in computer games. Also we discuss the algorithms that were developed for rigid bodies simulation including the dynamic collision detection, numerical methods and discuss the approach used for distributed rigid bodies using FDK.
  • Content Adaptation and Shared State Distribution for Multiplayer Mobile Games

    Mehdi, Qasim; Kumar, Pawan; Salim, Aly; Bechkoum, Kamal (The University of Wolverhampton, School of Computing and Information Technology, 2006)
    Typically games on mobile devices are limited to standalone single player games that are not only simple but also are limited by the device capabilities on which they are being played. With the advancement of networking technology, mobile multiplayer games have started to evolve. Nevertheless, these games are played on homogenous devices that have limited functionality and performance. For performance, scalability and heterogeneity, it is important that mobile multiplayer games be played on heterogeneous devices and able to support large number of players for an immersive experience. This demands that players not only receive the content as quickly as possible but also the content be adapted to the device capabilities. Further as different devices have different computing capabilities; it seems reasonable to distribute resources dynamically among the mobile players’ devices so that the overall shared state is maintained in a consistent state. In this paper we highlight the issues related to multiplayer gaming on mobile devices and provide a proposal for content adaptation and shared state distribution for multiplayer games on mobile devices based on dynamic scripting approach
  • Recursive Interest Management For Online Games

    Kumar, Pawan; Mehdi, Qasim (The University of Wolverhampton, School of Computing and Information Technology, 2006)
    Performance and scalability in multi-player online games and distributed simulators mainly depends on the effectiveness of the deployed interest management schemes. These schemes aim at providing messagefiltering mechanisms that reduces the communication overheads. However, in order to do so, they incur computational costs that are quite significant and are not suitable for scalable real time systems. In this paper, a recursive algorithm for interest management is presented that can be applied for systems that use multi-dimensional routing spaces for interest management. The algorithm’s simulation shows that it is more efficient and scalable than existing approaches.
  • Investigation into Mobile Development Tools and Technology for Mobile Games and Application

    Salim, Aly; Mehdi, Qasim (The University of Wolverhampton, School of Computing and Information Technology, 2006)
    Mobile devices have come a long way with the advancements in terms of processors, memory etc. This has brought about flexibility for development of platforms and different applications far more superior to older ones used and has prompted research into better methods of deployment and use of mobile device capabilities. This paper looks at different technological advancements in progress and also proposes a plan for future work evaluates current and future developments.
  • Towards Online Adaptation In Action Games: Case Storage and Retrieval

    Hartley, Thomas; Mehdi, Qasim (The University of Wolverhampton, School of Computing and Information Technology, 2006)
    In this paper we present our work towards the development of an online learning and adaptation architecture for non-player characters (NPCs) (agents) in first person shooter (FPS) computer games. We will outline the development of our case storage and retrieval method, which uses an adaptive k-d tree based approach and discuss the issues related to employing this technique for online storage and retrieval of cases. We conclude by evaluating the performance of the developed data structures and discussing results.
  • BDI for Intelligent Agents in Computer Games

    Davies, N.P.; Mehdi, Qasim (The University of Wolverhampton, School of Computing and Information Technology, 2006)
    With the emergence of complex computer games and advanced gaming hardware, possibilities for overcoming some of the deficiencies in traditional game AI are becoming feasible. These deficiencies include repetitive, predictable, and inhuman behaviour are caused by the reliance on simple reactive AI techniques. By using more sophisticated AI and agent techniques, we intend to overcome some of these problem areas. The aim of our research is to create new forms of intelligent characters (agents) that will exhibit human-like intelligence and provide more challenging and entertaining virtual opponents and team mates for computer games. We present here our prototype application that implements a BDI agent system within the 3D computer game Unreal Tournament via GameBots and JavaBots technology.
  • The Development of 3D Story Visualiser and Its Evaluation

    Zeng, Xin; Mehdi, Qasim; Gough, Norman (The University of Wolverhampton, School of Computing and Information Technology, 2007)
    The primary goal of this work is to demonstrate that it is possible to create a system that can interpret language descriptions and generate a corresponding virtual environment. This representational transformation is accomplished by implementing real world knowledge and current theories of language and perception. The proposals have been implemented as a prototype system 3D Story Visualiser (3DSV). This paper describes the prototype evaluations and discusses the results obtained from experiments made using the system.
  • Constant-Time Complexity Interest Management for Online Games

    Gallego, Francisco; Kumar, Pawan; Mehdi, Qasim; Bernab, Abel; Llorens, Faraon (The University of Wolverhampton, School of Computing and Information Technology, 2007)
    Data Distribution Management (DDM) services are very important to online services in general and, in particular, to online Computer Games. Many previous works have addressed the problemof minimizing bandwidth usage by avoiding sending unnecessary data to clients, which is often referred to as InterestManagement. Many good algorithms have been developed to calculate clients’ interests, having O(n2) complexity in worst case, but none of them have paid attention to the time dependencies of the data. In this paper we present a novel algorithm for Interest Management which reaches a O(1) complexity by profiting from time dependencies of data related to clients’ interests. Our results show that this approach improves previously existing ones in time performance, and it is specially suitable for its use in online computer game servers.
  • Towards Suitable Communication Protocols For Mobile Multiplayer Games on Heterogeneous Mobile Devices

    Salim, Aly; Mehdi, Qasim (The University of Wolverhampton, School of Computing and Information Technology, 2007)
    Currently research into communication protocols with regards to multiplayer gaming requirements has been sparse. There are a number of surveys on multicasting in mobile device communication which addresses latency reduction, density and traffic. Moreover, these studies have not addressed multiplayer gaming issues. Recent research in the area of mobile devices has focused in mobile communication and distribution systems for homogeneous devices but they have not fully addressed communication between heterogeneous devices. This work investigates suitable communication protocols for mobile multiplayer games on heterogeneous mobile devices. In particular issues such as scalability, reliability, bandwidth and data transportation time of communication systems and content distribution of mobile heterogeneous devices will be addressed. This paper proposes a hybrid protocol solution that addresses communication issues related to heterogeneous mobile devices as existing MANET protocols seem to lack the capability of solving these issues collectively.
  • Online Learning From Observation For Interactive Computer Games

    Hartley, Thomas; Mehdi, Qasim; Gough, Norman (University of Wolverhampton, School of Computing and Information Technology, 2005)
    The research presented in this paper describes an architecture, which enables an agent to predict an observed entity’s actions (most likely a human’s) online. Case-based approaches have been utilised by a number of researchers for online action prediction in interactive applications. Our architecture builds on these works and provides a number of novel contributions. Specifically our architecture offers a more comprehensive state representation, behaviour prediction and a more robust case maintenance approach. The proposed architecture is fully described in terms of interactive simulations (specifically first person shooter (FPS) computer games); however it would be applicable to other interactive applications, such as intelligent tutoring and surveillance systems. We conclude the paper by evaluating our proposed architecture and discussing how the system will be implemented.
  • Towards Interfacing BDI With 3D Graphics Engines

    Davies, N.P.; Mehdi, Qasim; Gough, Norman (University of Wolverhampton, School of Computing and Information Technology, 2005)
    This paper presents work in progress towards the goal of creating human-like artificial intelligence that interfaces with a 3D virtual environment to control computergenerated characters. We will outline out current development regarding the creation of BDI agents using the AI tool JACK, and how we intend to create a link between JACK and sophisticated graphics and game engines including Irrlicht and Unreal Tournament. We will also outline future aims including the introduction of a messaging protocol that will be used for AI/game communication. Using the techniques we hope to achieve behaviour in computer game characters that will appear more realistic than current reactive techniques.

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