AI Gamers Visit ISI in Droves, Facilitated by Award-Winning Support Effort

August 12, 2005

In June, a conference on Artificial Intelligence and Interactive Digital Entertainment (AIIDE) in Marina del Rey attracted specialists in the two disciplines from all over the country and half of them came to visit ISI.

For their work in facilitating the visits (from left to right) Ann Myers, Kary Lau, Ed Hovy, Erika Barragan-Nunez, Kathy Kurinsky, Ulf Hermjakob, Alma Nava, and Jihie Kim are the latest recipients of ISI Meritorious service awards, ISI Executive Director Herb Schorr (upper right corner, behind Kim) announced.

To use ISI's proximity to the conference to raise awareness of the Institute's resources in the field of AI, the Intelligent Systems Division held two open houses.

In addition to one that brought 30 of the 60 attendees of the AIIDE conference goers to ISI, a second effort attracted AI and IM experts from industry and educational institutions in the area, according to ISD director Yigal Arens.

The open houses showcased ISD research, staff and students using a series of overview talks, demos and printed material.

Setting up the open house events was a major effort that involved:
* identifying and organizing the research projects to be shown
* making contact with the invited guests and organizations,
* arranging for transportation (AIIDE attendees were shuttled over from their hotel),
* ordering and setting up food and beverages,
* serving the food,
* cleaning up, and more.

"Recipients of the awards worked very hard to put these two events together, doing much more than their normal jobs demand," Schorr said. "As a result of their effort many current and potential colleagues and contacts have a favorable view of ISD and ISI in general and a better appreciation of what we do."

"I'm really grateful to those who spent so much of their time setting up these open houses," said Arens. "We often complain that some people are still not fully aware of how excellent an institution ISI is. Events like these are an important way to rectify this situation."