Open House

28 - 30 August 2001

Press Release – For Immediate Release

The MOVES Institute: Modeling, Virtual Environments and Simulation for A Better Tomorrow

Naval Postgraduate School’s Premiere Institute Opens Doors to the Public

MONTEREY, Calif. (August 5, 2001)—The MOVES Institute ( is throwing open its doors to the general public for the first time ever with an event being held on the 28th through the 30th of August 2001 at the prestigious Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, California. The open house will show off work never previously seen in a public setting, according to Michael Zyda, institute Director.

Highlights of the event will include live demonstrations of leading edge research in networked virtual environments (net-VEs), including the long-in-development NPSNET-V system. The NPSNET-V architecture is designed to be the core underpinning of future Internet-based 3D games, net-VEs and simulation systems. NPSNET-V is an architecture for constructing scalable, dynamically extensible, net-VEs. Included in that architecture is the first time ever notion of a Virtual Reality Domain Name Service (VR-DNS), a method for discovering Internet-based virtual worlds wherever they may be.

Additional presentations will show off the NPSNET-V dynamic behavior protocol, a mechanism for interoperating and interacting with unfamiliar, newly discovered characters and objects in the net-VE. Researchers Don McGregor, Andrzej Kapolka, Michael Capps, Don Brutzman and Michael Zyda lead net-VE development in the institute and will be the presenters.

Computer-generated autonomy (CGA), the modeling and simulation of human and organizational behavior inside of a net-VE, is another major area to be seen at the open house. The theme throughout these talks is how we develop computer code that lets us model computer characters that are adaptable and capable of learning, computer code that can be inserted into our net-VEs. Highlights of the CGA session include talks by John Hiles on “Software agents: smarter, easier to create, more capable” and “A symbolic reactive agent architecture for multi-agent systems”. Hiles was a member of the Maxis team that brought out SimCity Supreme, SimAnt and SimFarm. He has been with the institutes’ researchers since mid 1998.

“Self-learning autonomous agents for distributed simulations” is a joint presentation by Michael van Putte, Brian Osborn and Dave Back. Their presentation examines architectures that allow software agents to learn.

Human-computer interaction (HCI) is covered through a number of institute researcher presentations. Rudy Darken starts off by defining the scope of institute interests in training in the net-VE, human factors in the net-VE, and intelligent tutoring systems. Perry McDowell provides an update on the institute Context Machine efforts. Krist Norlander presents his work on VE interface effects on collaborative personality traits. Eric Bachmann provides an update on the institute sourceless limb tracking project. Barry Peterson wraps up with a presentation on tutoring interactions, real, virtual and otherwise.

Defense and entertainment collaboration, a topic pioneered by the institute through its leadership of the NRC study entitled “Modeling and Simulation – Linking Entertainment and Defense”, is a large part of the institute’s research agenda. Michael Capps describes, for the first public time ever, the MOVES Institute War Game Laboratory, a videogame research and production facility. That laboratory has an R&D team of some twenty artists, level designers, game programmers and researchers, a facility and capability not duplicated at any other university or government laboratory. Members of the R&D team have recently come from such videogame production firms as Electronic Arts, Goldtree, Emergent Design, Sony, Daylight Productions, Kalisto, Homeland Federation, and John Mason Associates.

John Hiles and Brian Osborn take up the topic of interactive, computer-generated stories and show off, for the first time in a public presentation, the working Hiles-Osborn Story Engine (HOSE). The HOSE is capable of maintaining computer and interactive characters within the bounds of a defined story. The HOSE is capable of allowing emergent story as well. No other story engine has achieved the level of sophistication to be shown at this event.

Defense and entertainment collaboration wraps up with a presentation by Russ Shilling on net-VE sound design lessons learned from the entertainment industry, and a presentation by Michael van Putte on the institute’s SimSecurity, game-based learning virtual laboratory.

Institute-affiliated invited speakers include VADM Richard Mayo, USN “The future of Naval modeling and simulation”, Dennis McBride “When humans and machines take IQ test together – how modeling and simulation fundamentally change(s) society”, and George Solhan and Dylan Schmorrow “From technical to tactical – the ONR Virtual Technologies and Environments (VIRTE) program.”

All presentations for the open house are in the NPS Mechanical Engineering Auditorium. Additional details on registration and travel arrangements for the event can be found on the web at the following location:

About The MOVES Institute

The mission of The MOVES Institute is to be the world-class institute for research, application and education in the grand challenges of modeling, virtual environments and simulation. Institute research scope includes 3D visual simulation, networked virtual environments, computer-generated autonomy, human-computer interaction, technologies for immersion, defense and entertainment collaboration, and evolving operational modeling.

The institute operates both independently and in collaboration with the various Navy and Defense centers to: carry out basic and applied research; analyze modeling, virtual environments and simulation programs; create advanced prototypes; and develop technologies and applications for the defense community. Headquartered on the Naval Postgraduate School campus in Monterey, Calif., the institute is located on the Web at

For a complete listing of The MOVES Institute Events, please see here.

The MOVES Institute web site is here.

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