Interactive characters, 1999-2003

In 1999 I created a system for building ā€œ2.5Dā€ animated characters. It used 2D vector graphics and gradients, had lip-sync capabilities, control panels for testing the character’s movements and expressions, and could be animated within a web browser by sending simple text commands.

After joining the startup company “Talkie, Inc.” later in 1999, I adapted my system to work with their A.I. technology, and built most of their interactive characters and other demos within it. Over the following years I got to work with a fantastic group of A.I. programmers, engineers, writers, all varieties of internet-startup crew, and managed a team of artists at Talkie, Inc. for a variety of projects.

On the left hand side is the original character that I brought in to demonstrate my system for Talkie, and I later adapted her to be the first Talkie character. On the right is “Barkie” for
On the left is “Fiona” from 2003, a demo for a new character system. On the right side are a few more of my interactive Talkie characters.
This is one of my favorite characters, his role was to teach guitar and discuss topics like music history.
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