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The aim of this paper is to demonstrate Hermes, a robust framework capable of aiding a spatio-temporal database developer in modeling, constructing and querying a database with dynamic objects that change location, shape and size, either discretely or continuously in time. Hermes provides spatio-temporal functionality to state-of-the-art Object-Relational(More)
Presentation of content is an important aspect of today's virtual reality applications, especially in domains such as virtual museums. The large amount and variety of exhibits in such applications raise a need for adaptation and personalization of the environment. This paper presents a content personalization platform for Virtual Museums, which is based on(More)
There is a growing number of Problem-Based Learning (PBL) studies in Virtual Worlds (VWs); however the suitability of these approaches is still unknown for particular knowledge domains and in full-time courses. In this paper we argue that VWs can support a constructionist approach to PBL for blended practice-based courses of design and engineering, and we(More)
In this paper, we present SimHuman, a platform for the generation of real-time 3D environments with virtual agents. SimHuman is highly dynamic and configurable, as it is not based on fixed scenes and models, and has an embedded physically based modelling engine. Its agents can use features such as path finding, inverse kinematics and planning to achieve(More)
The practice of teaching and learning Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) design has to develop its own approaches that balance method and technology use with reflective and situated practice. We present our HCI design studio course that makes a combined use of constructivist pedagogies and virtual worlds aiming to aid students reflect on the use of related(More)
Software simulations of building evacuation during emergency can provide rich qualitative and quantitative results for safety analysis. However, the majority of them do not take into account current surveys on human behaviors under stressful situations that explain the important role of personality and emotions in crowd behaviors during evacuations. In this(More)
In this paper, we propose a perception model for virtual agents based on a two-layered architecture. Each agent is equipped with a sensing mechanism that retrieves the objects in its field of view and stores them in its memory, and with a perception module that applies a set of rules on them and generates its beliefs. We propose a scripting language for(More)
The use of Virtual Environments as a user interface is essential for certain types of applications, both in education and entertainment. These worlds are even more attractive for the user when they are neither static nor pre-scripted, but have dynamic characteristics and are populated by autonomous entities, also called virtual agents. There has been a lot(More)
Problem-based Learning (PBL) is an educational approach that is based on student collaboration and self-directed learning. In PBL, students learn by addressing ill-defined and open-ended problems reflecting on their experiences. This paper aims to investigate the suitability of Virtual Worlds (VWs) as a platform for hosting PBL activities and to report on(More)