This page gives answers on questions about Livinoids. If you are looking for specific answers for AI or more general questions, please go to the related FAQ.
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What are Livinoids ?
All types of Livinoids are based 100 percent on the human functions for physics, emotions, mental state, intelligence and creativity and are designed for high efficiency and minimal, lightweight usage of resources.
It is not the visual (2D or 3D) part of a game/simulation character or robot, it is literally what is happening ‘under the skin’ and should be used in conjunction with the visual character or robot. In human life, it would be ‘the magic’ happening behind the scenes defining the physiology, personality, psychology and intelligence.
There are three types :
Livinoids Physisia and Emosia are optimized and advanced virtual human-like life used for realistic and alive characters in advanced and realistic gaming and simulations. Both will be released soon (within approximately 1 year). From this point on, if we us the word "Livinoids" without a specification, we usually refer to both types.
Livinoid Intelligensia requires parts of both other types (Physisia and Emosia) and should be ready around 2025-2028. Livinoid Intelligensia is mainly intended for robotics. If we mention "AI" or an "artificial brain" or "AGI" (artificial general intelligence), it is this type we are referring to.
Why the name Livinoids ?
The name ‘Livinoid’ has been chosen because one of the main unique features is that Livinoids are (virtually) ‘alive and living’.
This name suits very well and has the right vibes !
What do you mean by 'it is alive' ?
If you give a Livinoid too much of salt, it will have a massive heart attack leading to the death of the character ! Give it a shot of 10 mg of heroine and it will overdose ! Give it potassium cyanide and the respiratory system will fail and the Livinoid will decease. Slip the wrists or shoot/stab the liver, let the blood flow and it will bleed to death ! Give it bad food or cigarettes during a long period of time and it might die from that ! In all these cases the (virtual) heartbeat will eventually stop and the virtual character will die since no more blood (nutrients, oxygen and energy) will be flowing in the organs, brains and muscles … … that is how ‘alive’ it is !
If two Livinoids Emosia, really hating each other for diverse reasons, live (forcibly) together in a confide space, one of them should fear for his/her live. In the right circumstances, one even could commit suicide … … that is how ‘alive’ it all is !
It is the closest in ‘virtual land’ you can get to real human-like life ! The main difference is that Livinoids can save their state at any moment, something we humans can't, unfortunately, do in our life …
Keep in mind that to achieve that kind of realism, Livinoids do not use statistics anywhere ...
Where can these Livinoids be used ?
Believe it or not, it is the most asked question when talking to people about Livinoids. It is not that surprising because it is a completely new product and people need time to get familiar with the concept.
Depending on the Type of the Livinoid, it can be used in different fields :
Is it even possible to make computers having 'real human' emotions ?
Technically, in psychology, emotions and feelings are two separate topics. But since most people use these terms as interchangeable and since Livinoid Emosia supports both, the term ‘emotions’ covers emotions, feelings and state of mind.
It took Geert Masureel, one of the founders of Artintelli, over 25 years of research to have a lightweight but realistic computer model using the principles behind how human emotions and feelings origin and function.
As Livinoid Emosia has no working brain, it is not possible to have everything exactly as if it was for humans. But, to be honest, it looks and works almost exactly like in ‘human reality’, so who cares !
Livinoid Intelligensia will even be closer to humans, as similar, but digital brains are added, empathy for humans included.
Therefore, the answer is dual for Livinoid Emosia : Yes, just discover how real it all looks and feels. No, since Livinoids Emosia have no ‘real brain’, they do not have the concepts humans have at that level ! For gaming and simulation purposes however, it is perfect !
I have seen some robot on TV or internet recognizing our emotions and responding to these emotions, aren't you too late to claim victory on digital emotions ?
Like we often state in the FAQ Artificial Intelligence, it sometimes looks very real and even scary, doesn't it ? However, what you have seen or heard, has nothing to do with 'having emotions'.
Give us a moment to explain. The best 'recognizers' and 'imitators' of human emotions are already very long among us and we call them psychopaths ! Numerous (scientific) books have been published on that topic and they all have in common that psychopathy is defined by a lack or very limited/different functioning of the emotional system in the brain AND by the absence of empathy !
Psychopaths had to adapt and recognize emotions and learn 'appropriate' reactions as a child to survive in a world where psychopathic behaviour is not well accepted ... ... basically what they do is recognizing the emotion and responding with a trained 'appropriate' reaction ! Looks very alike what most of these robots do ...
It is, therefore, fair of us to state that the system you have seen or heard about is probably psychopathic in nature ! Some of these 'smart robots' have actually stated in public that the human race should be extincted, oeps ... ... the slapping on the wrist to correct that, won't guarantee it will have empathy for humans all of a sudden. The same is true for human psychopaths ! It is very likely these artificial systems have no 'internal knowledge', no idea of what humans actually are ! So, how could it have empathy for us or anything at all ?
Making an artificial brain doing some 'amazing' tricks is not that difficult with today's technology. Making an artificial brain that has empathy for life in general and humans in particular, that is a whole other dimension and that cannot be done without the implementation of a very well defined emotional system. (Geert Masureel)
I have seen that other initiatives exist to simulate some emotions in games, like for instance 'Love/hate' for Unity. Why is your system better ?
First of all, we neither say nor claim that it is better ! That depends on what your desires and expectations are !
Remember, we are a non-profit organization and do not have to bend the truth to increase sales ! This is refreshing and awkward or unusual at the same time, isn't it ?
You should pick the system you think suits best the needs for your game. If that is ours, we are honored and thankful and we do consider it as a compliment for all the hard effort we have put into it ! If you choose other software, you will have your (good) reasons for that and it is not up to us to judge that !
That said, we have some very good arguments for you to select our software :
- Like in real life, Livinoids are not just about isolated simulated emotions, but our engine encompasses everything : physics, emotions, interactions, environment, health, etc and these have an impact on one-another ! It gives the game the highest form of reality possible today ! It literally makes the game alive ...
- Physics, health and emotions are not stable in human life, they evolve in a certain (correlated, predictable and complex) way. Livinoids do support this by default and in a very realistic way. This feature is what makes Livinoids so real, even if the LOD (Level Of Detail) is set low for some Livinoids and even if one just needs the physics part (Livinoid Physisia). You do not have to write any code to have that kind of realism in your game. It is actually the core of Livinoids and most likely what makes them so different (not better per definition) from all other systems.
- It can be as lightweight or as realistic as you want ! You pick the level of detail (LOD) per Livinoid and you choose how much info you send to the engine.
- Livinoid Engine, no matter what version, has advanced load balancing incorporated by default. In games, this can literally count and make the difference !
- We do not use statistics to have a realistic outcome, but a 'solid engine' based on cause and consequence is the driving force behind all !
- Create a Livinoid, with complete and realistic past (medical, psychological and experience wise), with only a few parameters and a mouse click ! You even get advice how your character should look to fit the personality !
The main reason why you would not choose for Livinoids, at this moment, is that the software will not be available before 2019. If you need a solution sooner, other software should be selected.
To be completely honest, although Livinoid Engine must not be your (final) choice, it should always be on your shortlist !
What price-tag can we expect the software to have and why not make it for free ?
Why not for free ?
The majority of Open Source/freeware software ends up with financial problems. It al starts good and donations are given to cover the initial phase, but afterwards it dries up.
The only exceptions are Open Source/freeware solutions with a backbone of commercial/governmental sponsors like for instance Ubuntu, LibreOffice, Blender, Apache, Java, ...
That is one of the reasons why it won't be available for free.
Another, and even more important ground for Artintelli, is that the funding of Livinoid Intelligensia will partially be done by the income of the other projects we do.
Although the price is not yet defined and we are a non-profit organization, it goes without saying that we cannot put a price-tag of just $€£ 50,- for everybody on such powerful software.
We will be very reasonable and as stated elsewhere, special (cheaper) versions for certain groups will be created. Small businesses (with minor income) and other non-profit organizations are the likely candidates for these versions.
Are 2D or 3D models and movements included with Livinoids ?
No. You need to provide these yourself. If you do not know how to do this, great tools are available for this purpose without an in-depth knowledge of 3D tools like Blender, Maya or 3D Studio.
A good starting point is www.reallusion.com where you can find tools for the easy creation of 2D and 3D characters, usable in games. Clothes, gadgets and motions for the characters can also be bought there. A special version for the creation of game characters has recently been added (Character Creator 3).
Please read the question What are Livinoids ? to have a better view on what Livinoids are.
Who in the gaming and simulation business should use Livinoids ?
Pretty much everybody using characters in his or her game !
As Livinoids run in their own ‘space’, apart from the game or simulation, and mainly interact with the game or simulation it is just a matter of creating the right interface.
A working interface for Unity 5 has already been created and one for Unreal and CryEngine should be realistic as well. Theoretically, if the game or simulation engine supports TCP (and some data protection), it is possible to make a connection and use Livinoids in your game or simulation.
What platforms and game engines will be supported ?
The development is in C# and therefore game engines supporting C# libraries have direct access to the engine. Since it is developed for both .NET version 4.6.1 and .Net Core 3.0, Mono is supported 100% and therefore most platforms (mobile and desktop) are supported if your game engine supports them via Mono (C#). Gaming engines like Unity, CryEngine and Xenko can therefore use this directly. This solution is however due to Mono not the fastest solution at all !
Since .Net Core 3.0 is supported as well, a (up to 8 times) faster Livinoid Engine version for Windows, MacOS and Linux will be available as well. It is best to look at that version as a 'server'. For the client-side (the game/simulation side), if a TCP connection can be created in the game-environment, the platform can be supported (even mobile platforms).
In that case, the preferred case, the Livinoid Engine runs on its own and uses TCP to communicate with the game. This means that Livinoid Engine runs separately from the game (engine) and therefore they have to work together, (literally) as two different applications. The major benefit is that it does not matter what game engine you use to create your game in. The only requirements are, as stated earlier, support for TCP, available in most. If this condition is met, usually an interface can be created to use the Livinoid Engine ! How lovely is that !
This approach of keeping the Livinoid Engine separate from the game (engine) also allows realistic access to a lot of Livinoids in mobile games. After all, Livinoids use a fair share of memory and processing power, although they are lightweight ! However, this is not the main target
Livinoid Engine uses advanced internal algorithms for load balancing. It frees up memory if possible and drops events if needed. However, this system has limitations, the more events are cancelled by the engine, the less realistic the outcome is.
Will the game/sim be slowed down when I use Livinoids indirectly via TCP (and not UDP) ?
Livinoids always live in their own world where lots of things happen simultaneously, no matter if you use the engine directly in your code or via TCP. They only need ‘external information’ if something happens literally ‘in the game’ and that is not 20 times per second ! However, if there would be such high level of activity, gather the happenings together and only send it once or twice per second to the Livinoid engine !
The same goes for the information one receives from the Livinoids. Once or twice per second is more than enough and at max, in a very realistic game or simulation, maybe three times should suffice !
Again, keep in mind, that behind the scenes in the Livinoid Engine a lot is happening. As it always runs separately from your game (even if used directly in code) or simulation, not that much of interaction is required to produce realistic results in the game or simulation !
The emphasis here is on the reliability of the sending and receiving of the information ! Because of this, in the server version, TCP is the obvious choice.
What data can I expect to send to and receive from the Livinoids Engine ?
All data, both in- and output, at the side of the game or simulation is in JSON or (if supported) BSON format. Most modern game engines handle JSON format by default or, if not, cheap and good/fast working extensions/scripts/components can be bought on their marketplaces. Not all Support BSON, the faster and compacter solution.
What you receive or need to pass depends on the parameters you set and the level of detail wanted. You can indicate if you would like to receive ‘the heartbeat’ and the ‘blood pressure’ per Livinoid for instance. You are most likely not interested in these values of ‘the enemy’, but for the ‘own team’, it is important information if used to make a nicer and more exiting HUD !
A massive amount of data can be provided per Livinoid. The more Livinoids you use simultaneously, the larger the datastream becomes and a higher processing capacity is required in the game or simulation. General rule of thumbs therefore is that the more Livinoids are used at once, the more one should optimize and define what is really needed to receive per Livinoid.
If you have a rather simple game and just would like to add more reality in energy usage and fatigue, it could suffice to only use four speeds (energy usages) as input for the Livinoids Engine : ‘Idle’, ‘Walking’, ‘Running’, ‘Sprinting’.
Livinoids also require some initial parameters (can be generated easily) like age, gender, physical condition and genetics. Even with only one of the above four parameters for ‘running’ passed to the Livinoid Engine, a unique but realistic available energy level (total and per muscle group) will be passed back and can be used by you ! If the ‘legs’ are too weak to keep the character standing, that info will be communicated to you ! It will also inform you if ‘a load’ (a heavy weapon for instance) is too heavy to keep holding up the arms …
On the other hand, if you have an advanced game or simulation, requiring more detail, the sky pretty much is the limit ! Energy maps for any activity can be created and a repository of several hundreds of these are in place at this very moment. They need a bit more fine-tuning, but are already very accurate !
Like always, age, condition/physicality and genetics are used to make the data even more realistic !
In case you need someone ‘running up hill at slow pace’ or ‘diving in water at full speed’, if you have the right library containing the energy map, it is at your disposal !
Depending on the funding, more or less ‘Food/Drinks’ and ‘Health/Medicine/Poisons’ will be available as well. In using these, it is the volume or mass that needs to be passed along with the tag for the consumed item. If the character is, for instance, having diarrhea as a result of ‘eating/drinking/taking’ this, you will be notified (if set in preferences) and you do with that information whatever you want. In the Engine itself it will remain part of the condition of the Livinoid and could for instance lead towards dehydration, something you would also be informed of and could react upon !
What you basically forward to the Livinoid Engine for Physisia is for instance the environmental conditions (weather), what the character(s) is (are) doing right now (energy wise) and the food/drink it ‘consumes’.
Livinoid Engine for Emosia requires that you also forward what is happening in the game (the events). A more detailed mapping of the environmental conditions having an effect on the emotional state of the Livinoid(s) is also in place. The proximity of the others is important as well. Putting two Livinoids, hating each other, near to one-other is going to give fireworks at emotional level ! It is advisable to provide a ‘past’ for a Livinoid Emosia, but this can easily be auto created based on some preferences.
How should I adapt or create my technical concept of the game or sim with Livinoids Engine in mind ?
This is a little more technical, but let’s keep it as simple as possible !
Please read the question on the supported OSes and Game engines to get a better understanding.
It mainly depends on the type of game or simulation you are creating.
As a game or simulation designer, do i still need to make my game logic and behavior trees ?
For Unity, we are in the process of creating character controllers and the whole shebang to make it easier for game/simulation designers. For other platforms, we have no plans to make the implementation our selfs at this very moment, but if the demand is high enough, it is a possibility we will consider.
So, if not for Unity, yes, you are after all the only one who knows how the game should be ‘glued’ together according to your requests and wishes !
It will, however, be different. You now receive states the Livinoid is in at that moment and you can react on that ! You will design your logic and behavior based on this information/states !
Assume you receive for the parameter ‘calmness’ a value indicating ‘the thing’ to be ‘furious’ and imagine you receive for the parameter ‘love’ (for the other character) a value of ‘real and profound hate’. In your behavior tree, if both are ‘true’, it would indicate something like a ‘crime passionel’ with a violent and over brutally attack as a consequence. Lots of stabbing or shots will be the result and you could add the possibility to use in this case a weapon killing only very slowly or causing a lot of pain. Although it could be a ‘crime passionel’, the same could apply on the battlefield if an enemy just slaughtered a very good friend !
If, however, the Livinoid is a professional hitman or a soldier on the battlefield in ‘normal conditions’, the parameter for ‘calmness’ would be ‘slightly nervous’ and param ‘Love’ (for the other character) having a value of ‘neutral’. This would result in your behavior tree with the outcome of just one or two stabs or shots. The target after all is just to kill the ‘enemy’, not to get rid of the frustrations like with the ‘crime passionel’ as described above.