Project Intimate links a library of motions to ‘natural language words’

Ikinema debuts voice-activated animations for VR and AR

Animation specialists Ikinema has showcased an innovative new technology that will see video game characters moving and responding based on voice commands.

Currently known as Project Intimate, the tech was demonstrated at last week’s SIGGRAPH and is built with both virtual and augmented reality in mind. Examples of potential use cases include VR characters that can be interacted with verbally, and augmented reality virtual pet titles or digital board games that operate solely on voice commands.

The technology is based around a library of motion animations that are then linked to “natural language words”, with transitions from one animation to another being generated based on spoken commands. Procedural blending and adaption ensures that the base animations adapt to the surrounding environment.

“Imagine a world where we can interact with virtual characters by talking to them – just like in the real world,” said Pechev. “Real and virtual worlds are going to merge. Virtual characters will be part of every day life. But to be credible, the virtual world needs to behave like the real world. 

“At IKinema we are firm believers that animation needs to be procedurally generated in a very realistic way so that it is indistinguishable from the real world. Going 100 per cent procedural is a difficult task, but a natural solution is to combine real motion with procedural adaptation, all driven by voice commands. This is Project Intimate.”

Ikinema hopes to make the technology commercially available later this year, and is looking for partners to help create an SDK.

You can check out the tech for yourself in the video below.

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