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Behavioral Mathematics for Game AI description


Some of you have asked me questions about my new book, “Behavioral Mathematics for Game AI.” The information that is on amazon and other retailers is not up to date. For one, there is no cover picture. There’s a good reason for that. The cover is still being laid out and will be uploaded to the resellers soon. In the mean time, here’s the cover art that I developed (click for a nicely detailed larger version).

The description text that you see on the resellers’ sites is based on what I originally submitted to my publisher when I began the writing process. Things have changed a little bit since then. The following is likely what we are putting on the back of the book and will eventually be updated on Amazon, etc.

Human behavior is never an exact science. As a result, the design and programming of artificial intelligence that seeks to replicate human behavior is already an uphill battle. Usually, the answers can not be found in sterile algorithms that are often the focus of artificial intelligence programming. However, by analyzing why people humans (and other sentient beings) behave the way we do, we can break the process down into increasingly smaller components. We can model many of those individual components in the language of logic and mathematics and then reassemble them into larger, more involved decision-making processes.

Drawing from classical game theory, this book covers both the psychological underpinnings of human decisions and the mathematical modeling techniques that AI designers and programmers can use to replicate them. With examples from both “real life” and game situations, the author explores topics such as the fallacy of “rational behavior,” utility, and the inconsistencies and contradictions that human behavior often exhibits. Readers are shown various ways of using statistics, formulas, and algorithms to create believable simulations and to model these dynamic, realistic, and interesting behaviors in video games.

Additionally, the book introduces a number of tools that the reader can use in conjunction with standard AI algorithms to make it easier to utilize the mathematical models. Lastly, the programming examples and mathematical models shown in the book are downloadable, allowing the reader to explore the possibilities in their own creations.

If you have any other questions about the book, feel free to ask! (And yes, it should be available at the Charles River Media booth at the Game Developers Conference next month. I’ll be there quite a bit… flag me down!)

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