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ACM TechNews

Game Trains Soldiers in a Virtual Iraq or Afghanistan

woman in First Person Cultural Trainer game

The Arts and Technology project team conducted extensive research to get the characters in the First Person Cultural Trainer, a 3-D interactive game, to look, sound and act like the culture they're representing.

Credit: The University of Texas at Dallas

University of Texas at Dallas (UTD) researchers are developing First Person Cultural Trainer, a computer training tool designed to make it easier for military personnel to perform missions in Iraq and Afghanistan. The three-dimensional interactive game teaches soldiers the values and norms of Iraqi and Afghan cultures.

Previously, training has been done by building actual villages and hiring actors to replicate a particular culture. The researchers worked to make the game's characters look, sound, and act as much as possible like the people they are meant to represent, says UTD professor Marjorie Zielke.

"Much of the cultural data is being developed in real time by the military," Zielke says. "By having it in a systems-based approach that is composable ... we can respond to the data as soon as it becomes available."

From UT Dallas News
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