One of Unity Labs’ missions is identifying and supporting cutting edge research. For 2017, we have identified a slate of research topics we are currently working on in the areas not limited to VR and AR authoring tools, Game AI, and Graphics. It’s our vision to advance the next generation of 3D interactive entertainment content authoring.
Over the past weeks, we’ve joined forces with Unity’s AI & Machine Learning Group to identify and support graduate researchers specifically working on research challenges in Machine Learning for games.
The current perception of Machine Learning in the games industry is surrounding the potential that learning has to offer the gaming world. Learning from game data related to individuals, their characters, and accounts offers useful analytics to improve strategy and game tactics. Beyond that, we see learning playing a role in enabling the creation of scalable and complex interactive content. This comes at a time studios are beginning to integrate the Unity engine in their current production workflows; and academia responding to this by either adding new Unity courses to their existing programs, or creating new interdisciplinary programs. Our plans are thus to forge academic collaborations to facilitate mindshare and help fill the knowledge and research gaps.
The VP of Machine Learning at Unity Technologies, Danny Lange, recognizes there are talented students that have been working on bleeding edge research as part of their existing programs:
“We recognize that schools around the world, offer programs to teach technical skills in computer games programs in computer science or related fields. We want to provide enrolled graduate students an opportunity to go beyond, and work on relevant and applied research related to games, and enable them to bring this research back to their schools and communities of practice.”
Today, we’re excited to announce the call for applications for Unity’s first graduate research fellowship program, held in conjunction with Unity’s AI & Machine Learning Group and Unity Labs, opens at Unite Europe on June 27, 2017. The fellowship program will give 2 graduate research fellows the opportunity to work for 6 months on exploratory research related to state-of-the art Machine Learning algorithms for interactive entertainment content authoring.
Selected graduate research fellows will have the opportunity to work on applied advanced Machine Learning research topics including and not limited to the problems of constructing game AI, and explore solutions using a combination of deep reinforcement learning and generative nets. Topics include:
- Set NPC behavior – Should the AI act based on past behavior and when should it try new behavior to create more realistic and believable game characters?
- Digital content generation – Related to creating animations, graphics, and dialogue, how can the AI generalize and apply their lessons learned from one experience to another experience; and in turn establish more efficient content creation workflows?
- Game development process optimization – How do we include game AI as part of next generation content creation workflows that help reduce uncertainty around developer / artistic decision making?
The fellowship program is intended to boost global knowledge and innovation in the field of games, and advance the career or research of students interested in pushing the boundaries of state of the art in games. For more information about the program please visit the Unity Labs Research page, and follow us on Twitter or Facebook for more announcements.