Employing Virtual Humans for Education and Training in X3D/VRML Worlds
Published in:Proceedings of LET-Web3D 2004: 1st International Workshop of Web3D Technologies in Learning, Education and Training, October 2004, pp. 23-27.
Abstract:Advances in computer graphics, improvements in hardware performance, and network technologies have enabled a new class of interactive applications involving virtual humans, threedimensional simulations of human beings. Virtual humans are more and more used in multimedia learning environments, e.g. to explain maintenance operations, to train medical staff, or can be employed as virtual teachers. Nevertheless, in Web3D sites virtual humans are in practice rarely used, since they are complex to implement and their proper development requires knowledge of several disciplines (e.g., biomechanics, kinematics, artificial intelligence, computer graphics,…). Moreover, the programming effort to develop and re-use the virtual human into different learning environments can be considerable. In this paper, we propose a general architecture that allows Web3D content creators to easily integrate virtual humans into learning environments. The proposed solution can be used independently from the specific learning application domain (e.g. from a technical presentation to an history lesson). To test the applicability and effectiveness of our approach, we have applied it in a virtual museum of computer science.