Virtual Poster Presenter: An Emotional Cognitive Architecture in Action
Emotional capabilities of interactive virtual agents grow every year, while most of them lack in emotional intelligence. Their abilities to recognize and express emotions may be worthless, if the agent cannot decide how to behave adequately in a given social context. The central part of the problem, the logic of socially emotional behavior, remains an unsolved challenge. Here this challenge is addressed within a virtual reality paradigm of a poster presenter, designed on the basis of the emotional Biologically Inspired Cognitive Architecture (eBICA). The framework of eBICA combines the formalisms of semantic maps, moral schemas, mental states and narratives in order to achieve believable, socially acceptable interactive behavior of the presenter bot. The paradigm involves establishment and maintenance of a stable socially emotional contact with mutual empathy and trust. Results of evaluation of the prototype by participants at two international virtual conferences speak in favor of the selected approach.