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 Behaviour Editor Brainstorming

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The Uteen
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PostSubject: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Thu Jul 12, 2012 1:11 pm

We have hardly anything about how the behaviour editor will work at the moment. What there is is scattered around otherwise irrelevant threads, and not very easily accessible, so this thread can be used to assemble all ideas about what we want the behaviour editor to be able to do. We can also determine which uses are not feasible programming-wise.

Current Concept:

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

Variables (ie. triggers):

- During times [time] {see note} to [time] {see note} of a [real second, real minute, day, year, eternity]
- If [gender, organic class]
- If doing [action] (see actions)
- If within [distance] of [other organisms, or any defined objects (fruit, rock, stick, etc.)] (these need to also be detectable by the organism with at least one sense) (distances can include certain variables, such as grasp radius, all visible area, etc.)
- If health is below [Health level]
- If hunger is below [Hunger level]
- If energy is below [Energy level]
- If [unconscious, paralysed, any other ideas]

? When [Emotion (Alarmed, content, etc.)] - , possibly not doable, but worth confirmation. Would be good for things like adrenaline when scared, screaming when scared, etc.


This is the note mentioned where I put {see note}

The final option influences the measurement of time:
of a ... - what {see note} is
real second - milliseconds
real minute - seconds
day - Thrive hours (dayĆ·24)
year - uses seasons, so [time] becomes a choice of spring, summer, autumn, and winter.
eternity - years

I hope you understand that bit, I admit I've explained this quite badly, but it provides simplicity to the user.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

Logic functions:

- Not
- And
- Or
- Delay
- Random on/off variable
- Do Not Repeat - to run an action only once per trigger.
- Other logic stuff

Optional:

- Nand
- Nor
- Xand
- Xor

You probably get the idea...

Note: It is possible to attach multiple logic functions/actions to an output, to trigger simultaneously.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

Actions:
(have an output, to trigger another action when complete)

- Cease [action]
- Become idle
- Follow [organism, object] (also acts as 'approach', for immobile objects) by [land, sea, air, any combination] (air includes jumping)
- Flee from [organism, object]
- Sleep
- Use [part] to [part action]

Part actions include:
- Eat [organism, object]
- Look around (good for when hunger low, so food can be spotted, triggering another 'eat' behaviour)
- Move [Direction] (possibly radial (select a point on a circle rather than from a list))

Part actions are possible actions assigned to specific parts in the OE. Basically, any action the part allows the owner to perform are one of its 'part actions'. When a part is selected, the part actions for that part are shown. This should simplify things for the user, and make the actions list less cluttered.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

Appearance:

- Flowcharty. (I think this would work best, but open to ideas)
- Shard theme, to match the other GUI stuff we have. This would make it look very nice, in my opinion.
- On the other hand, probably it'll be decided when we have some of the arty folk do some concept designs.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

Misc. Features:
(a behaviour is a complete string or web thing, starting with variables and ending with actions)

- Save a sequence of actions (so anything covered in the 'actions' segment), for easier use, and to save space in the bit where you see the behaviours.
- Also, the ability to save one or more complete behaviours for use in another organism.
- Behaviour names (for quick finding)
- Behaviour comments (for a summary of the purpose or result of the behaviour)
- A search feature. (can just use name & comments, or possibly a tag system, either based of used commands or user-set tags)
~ User-set tags, if the above is implemented.
- Later on in development, when the main BE is all done, we could add a 'simple behaviour editor', with things such as aggressiveness sliders, and various drop-down menus with ready-made behaviours, for ease-of-use.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------


If you have any ideas not mentioned here for what the BE should be able to do, please post them.

Also, if you think you can organise this better, please do. I expect this post will be a pain to read, despite my desperate edits to make it more readable.

Lastly, if you have any concept art, general thoughts, or anything relevant to the Behaviour Editor, post! This concept needs doing. The BE is a significant part of the Organism Editor, so the OE wont be complete until this is.


Last edited by The Uteen on Sat Jul 21, 2012 5:10 am; edited 3 times in total
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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Thu Jul 12, 2012 3:30 pm

Bits and pieces of the behaviour editor should be automated, depending on the diet of the critter. For example, a carnivore would be more aggressive, a herbivore less so, and omnivores in between. Also, I'm not sure if this is in your post, but I think an aggression slider should also be included, with one end being passive, and the opposite being super aggressive (think a wolverine). Also, a flowchart would be good (and easiest on our beleaguered programmers), but why not have it in shard form? I have a rough idea of what it should look like (it'll be a pencil and paper drawing, with little written on the shards), which I will post either later today or sometime tomorrow; most likely by tomorrow.
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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Fri Jul 13, 2012 11:01 am

Sorry to double-post, but here it is!
Spoiler:
 

It's really messy, I know, but it's just a rough concept. In the flowchart itself, some things can be selected in addition to the other choices on the flowchart (indicated by an asterisk). parts of the chart with a question are a yes or no sort of thing, and when clicked signify a yes. Choices past those can still be selected if the one before is a no. Also, since there will be a HUGE amount of behaviours, I think a zoom in/out function will be useful, so we can actually fit everything into the behaviour editor and still have it readable.
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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Fri Jul 13, 2012 12:23 pm

Yeah, there should be a randomize button. The way it'll be structured should make sure that the behaviours make sense.
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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Fri Jul 13, 2012 1:54 pm

Brennus wrote:
Yeah, there should be a randomize button. The way it'll be structured should make sure that the behaviours make sense.
When we get to it. Programming something like that will take a lot of time, and making it readable in the editor will extend that. To start with, it will have to be manual, so manual should be our priority.

As for the aggression slider suggestion... I think it probably isn't necessary, but would be good as part of a simplified behaviour editor section.

All a basic 'attack on sight' command would take in the editor is something like:
(Colour for clarity, no real method in colouration)

Only attacking if health is above 20%.

To be honest, I think making an organism's behaviour would be quite enjoyable - it's a simple form of programming, but you need no experience to do it. However, I do see how it could get boring, and not everyone would enjoy it, so the simplified behaviour editor section would probably be their thing.


Oh, and a technical note on behaviours:
Maybe, for actions which repeat (like use mouth to bite closest organism) we should have a global delay of around 1 second before they execute, to account for the organism's 'thinking time'; then, once an action has executed successfully, have a delay of around 0.2 milliseconds before repeating, until the input=0? Continuous actions like 'follow X' would just have the initial delay, then continue until the input returns to 0.
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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Fri Jul 13, 2012 2:33 pm

Maybe we could have a simplified behaviour editor show up first, and once the person scrolls down, a message comes up with "more" behaviour editors. The simple one should cover most of the bases, while the complex one should be for people who want the most control over what the creature does.
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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Fri Jul 13, 2012 8:29 pm

We seem to have a good idea of the interface and general look of the BE. Overall we should probably look towards products such as Lego Mindstorm for the flowchart concept.

In the mutation and player modifications how do we prevent the system and player from turning the Organism's Behaviour into a slobbering mess. Should we perhaps have several core behaviours which are impossible to edit, at least until a viable alternative exists for the behaviour (possible causing redundant behaviours similar to redundant genes IRL) and during this how will we determine if a behaviour is viable.

When the randomize process runs through, the created behaviours should probably only create basic survival behaviours (eating, hunting, mating, running / hiding). Otherwise we run the risk of excessive junk behaviours being created with regard for the necessary behaviours.

In regards to the Physical, an Organism would probably require a larger neural center to run a large Behaviour Network.
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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Fri Jul 13, 2012 10:07 pm

Maybe we could have a system where behaviours are slowly unlocked as intelligence increases. This would solve one of the problems mentioned by GamerXA, and it would be a handy indicator of how close you are to sapience (the proper term to describe higher intelligence). Also, if there are redundant behaviours, they should be merged for the sake of simplicity.
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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Sat Jul 14, 2012 11:39 am

Gryphogrox wrote:
Brennus has a good point, we can begin with the behavioural constants GamerXA pointed out: eating, mating, running/hiding, urinate, defecate, itch, etc. Those cannot be changed, then the oppurtunity arises to have one more behaviour made by the player as intelligence goes up. Gradually resulting in more and more until they finish the multicellular stage, and maybe after they have had hands for a period of time, you can unlock the pick-up action in the behaviour editor which then could result in the discovery of the tech editor.
Behavioural constants (i.e. instincts) would have to include everything you can do normally with the game's controls, such as moving and eating. Your other examples would be useful, too.

I think the intelligence level should only allow either more complex behaviours, and/or more behaviours.
The variables, logic functions, and actions shouldn't change very much due to intelligence. Once awakening is reached, the behaviour editor wont be valid anymore - sapient behaviours are just too complicated to be programmed by the player, even top neurologist-programmers are struggling with that.

The ability to pick things up would be a part action of graspers, it shouldn't require sapience. However, they would be required along with sapience to unlock the tech editor.
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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Sat Jul 14, 2012 7:00 pm

Some behaviours just wouldn't apply to some Organisms, such as movement behaviours to one without any locomotion (or muscles) and eating behaviours for something which photosynthesizes or absorbs food directly. An Organism without sentience would not be capable of any complex decisions based on thoughts and would most likely be limited to instinctual and autonomous reactions (Basically a sea sponge or plant).

In regards to sapience, I agree with Uteen, the behaviours are too complicated to keep track of. However, what behaviours and at which point do we define as the beginning of Sapience? I have seen one documentary which defined it as being able to attach concepts to each other to create a cause and effect though this, I understand, is a point of contention for science. I believe we have discussed a limited Strategy Mode being available to large organised colonies such as ants. So perhaps we should implement a similar concept to the Aware Stage and Tech Editor upon several complex Behavioural stepping stones.

It might also be worthwhile to have a random generator Behaviour Part. I have heard of several neural network projects which include them. Possibly also variables which could be assigned values (like health, thirst or tiredness at the point when assigned).
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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Sun Jul 15, 2012 9:35 am

GamerXA wrote:
Some behaviours just wouldn't apply to some Organisms, such as movement behaviours to one without any locomotion (or muscles) and eating behaviours for something which photosynthesizes or absorbs food directly. An Organism without sentience would not be capable of any complex decisions based on thoughts and would most likely be limited to instinctual and autonomous reactions (Basically a sea sponge or plant).

In regards to sapience, I agree with Uteen, the behaviours are too complicated to keep track of. However, what behaviours and at which point do we define as the beginning of Sapience? I have seen one documentary which defined it as being able to attach concepts to each other to create a cause and effect though this, I understand, is a point of contention for science. I believe we have discussed a limited Strategy Mode being available to large organised colonies such as ants. So perhaps we should implement a similar concept to the Aware Stage and Tech Editor upon several complex Behavioural stepping stones.

It might also be worthwhile to have a random generator Behaviour Part. I have heard of several neural network projects which include them. Possibly also variables which could be assigned values (like health, thirst or tiredness at the point when assigned).
Yes... And no...

Sapience will be triggered as stated in another thread, by the player partaking in a large number of intelligent actions such as assembling simple Tech Objects, like rocks and sticks, and arranging them. For AI, it's random chance that sapience is gained. But please don't start getting into discussion about how sapience is unlocked in this thread...

Also, I already have put a random output generator in the logic functions. Please check the OP.

@Gryphogrox: There are 3 parts of behaviour editing:

Variables:
Conditions which, when met, result in a positive output to a connected logic function or action. These basically determine when the action part of the behaviour will occur in-game. The conditions are basically the 'if _' part of the behaviour.

Logic functions:
Things which provide an output, usually based on a number of inputs. Things like AND & OR join up several variables to give one output, either when both are positive, or when either one are positive, or something else, depending on which you use. There are also things like random value generators, which give a random positive or negative output. Logic just covers anything which isn't a variable or action, and come into play when making more complex behaviours.

Actions:
Things the organism does, when the input to the action is positive. Basically, the physical part of the behaviour, which can be observed by the player. This includes things such as following and eating. Actions are basically the 'then _' part of the behaviour.

When these are put together into a flowchart-type arrangement, the result is a 'behaviour'. Behaviours are like an organism's instincts, such as a wolf's instinct to hunt prey when hungry, and vary between organisms. For this reason, sapient organisms don't rely on behaviours, making them near-useless in sapience. When in sapience, the Organism Editor, and thus the Behaviour Editor subsection of the Organism Editor, are hidden from the player, if editors are enabled.

Pre-set behaviours are what we are calling 'instincts', and are unchangeable and invisible behaviours which all organisms have, such as how to walk, mate, and excrete waste material. They are equivalent to the most fundamental instincts of real organisms.


Got it?
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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Sun Jul 15, 2012 4:03 pm

Gryphogrox wrote:
Okay, I got it, just one more thing, if two behaviours are conflicting, is one randomly chosen? How will that work?
...
...

I assume you mean a situation along the lines of a follow and flee action triggered simultaneously?
Hm... I hadn't though of that, good point...

Buffering, please wait...

I'd suggest that we have a list of certain actions which conflict, and the player can reorder them to change the priority. Whichever action is higher on that list would take priority over the conflicting behaviour if a conflict was to arise.
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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Mon Jul 16, 2012 8:22 am

I am back from 11 days in tampa, florida.
Good idea Uteen.
I shall read the rest of this topic, or atleast most of it.
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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Sun Jul 22, 2012 9:17 pm

I did not mention this Uteen, but I ADORE your flowchart idea. It's simple, easily understood and programmed, and allows us to use the parts-palette style of editor that we're using for most everything else.

In addition, it looks to help facilitate the idea of unlocking behaviors as a reward for increasing intelligence, which is something I've been concerned about.
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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Mon Jul 23, 2012 12:52 pm

Tenebrarum wrote:
I did not mention this Uteen, but I ADORE your flowchart idea. It's simple, easily understood and programmed, and allows us to use the parts-palette style of editor that we're using for most everything else.

In addition, it looks to help facilitate the idea of unlocking behaviors as a reward for increasing intelligence, which is something I've been concerned about.
Agreed. BE should have its own complexity gauge which is measured by brain size. In addition to this, the number and acuity of sense organs should also be limited by the brain of your organism.

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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Sat Jul 28, 2012 2:16 pm

Hold. One guy here said herbivores would be less aggressive than carnivores. That may be stereotype, but it's not true. Hippoes actively chase and kill crocodiles. Think about that for a moment. And the original slider concept would be both easier to program and more visually appealing.
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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Sat Jul 28, 2012 3:51 pm

Deathbite42 wrote:
Hold. One guy here said herbivores would be less aggressive than carnivores. That may be stereotype, but it's not true. Hippoes actively chase and kill crocodiles. Think about that for a moment. And the original slider concept would be both easier to program and more visually appealing.
That's true. Let's stop here, for a moment, and consider what sliders we need to encompass all simple behavior, and what they mean.

Caution/Aggression
This would effect the base response to other animals, whether it hides from new things or charges at them. For fine tuning, you could choose its caution/aggression towards each other species (and its own) individually.

Sociality
Effects the tendency of multiple members o a species to build communal groups. It doesn't actually effect the behavior of individual animals, just the probability of you encountering more than one at a time.

Territoriality
Does the animal claim territory? How big is the territory? How aggressively does it protect that territory?

Intelligence (?)
This would probably not be a slider, but by increasing brain size or upgrading neural efficiency, you can put points in an intelligence bar. The number of points here effects how many custom behaviors your organism can have apart from the ones predefined by the sliders.

Curiosity
Effects the tendency of the animal to be found outside of its usual habitat or territory from 0% (never leaves) to 50% (spends half of its time away from its usual environment. Will be useful for ETOs.


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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Sat Jul 28, 2012 5:25 pm

~sciocont wrote:
Deathbite42 wrote:
Hold. One guy here said herbivores would be less aggressive than carnivores. That may be stereotype, but it's not true. Hippoes actively chase and kill crocodiles. Think about that for a moment. And the original slider concept would be both easier to program and more visually appealing.
That's true. Let's stop here, for a moment, and consider what sliders we need to encompass all simple behavior, and what they mean.

Caution/Aggression
This would effect the base response to other animals, whether it hides from new things or charges at them. For fine tuning, you could choose its caution/aggression towards each other species (and its own) individually.

Sociality
Effects the tendency of multiple members o a species to build communal groups. It doesn't actually effect the behavior of individual animals, just the probability of you encountering more than one at a time.

Territoriality
Does the animal claim territory? How big is the territory? How aggressively does it protect that territory?

Intelligence (?)
This would probably not be a slider, but by increasing brain size or upgrading neural efficiency, you can put points in an intelligence bar. The number of points here effects how many custom behaviors your organism can have apart from the ones predefined by the sliders.

Curiosity
Effects the tendency of the animal to be found outside of its usual habitat or territory from 0% (never leaves) to 50% (spends half of its time away from its usual environment. Will be useful for ETOs.

But what if ETOs spend more than 50% of the time away from the territory it inhabits the most? Example: 40% of time in in grassland, 30% in jungle, 30% in desert?
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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Sat Jul 28, 2012 5:41 pm

I'm thinking of running ETOs as a separate category. They live in and are tethered to evolution in one biome (I guess it would be a sort of breeding ground), but spread out into surrounding biomes. Their populations in nonnative biomes are proportional to those in the native biome.

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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Sat Jul 28, 2012 5:50 pm

Perhaps a better idea is simply having a list of all available biomes. You are given a percent of time in each of them, from 0 to 100, but the total is always 100.
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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Sat Jul 28, 2012 6:11 pm

Deathbite42 wrote:
Perhaps a better idea is simply having a list of all available biomes. You are given a percent of time in each of them, from 0 to 100, but the total is always 100.
I' not quite sure I understand what you're trying to say.

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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Sat Jul 28, 2012 6:16 pm

Carnodon
100% of time in desert
0% of time in jungle
0% of time in plains
Cannot survive in taiga!
Cannot survive in tundra!
Cannot survive in deep sea!
Cannot survive in coral reef!
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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Sat Jul 28, 2012 6:22 pm

Deathbite42 wrote:
Carnodon
100% of time in desert
0% of time in jungle
0% of time in plains
Cannot survive in taiga!
Cannot survive in tundra!
Cannot survive in deep sea!
Cannot survive in coral reef!
Ok, makes sense. the problem with ETOs isn't where they spend their time, its whose evolution they effect. See, since each biome is a self-contained stage for evolution, if you spend half of your time in one, and half in another, where do you evolve in? Where does your population really reside?

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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Sat Jul 28, 2012 6:32 pm

You evolve in both. Your population really resides in both. They affect the evolution of both. Let me explain. Imagine you are a species whose lifespan lasts bilions of years. you also have a massive lab. In one, you put a self-contained jungle. It has many creatures, from monkeys to snakes. The other is a sea with even more. That makes for a LOT of wildlife. But one species is special. His name is The Saltwater Crocodile, and he can live in both. You give him a bridge they can use to freely move from vat to vat. You will see that there evolve both monkeys that crawl into trees to evade him, and fish with scales he cannot break. However, let's say there is a leopard with more bite power than him. It lives in the jungle. The prior mentioned fish will only withstand the crocodile's bite power, because it will never meeet a jaguar.
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PostSubject: Re: Behaviour Editor Brainstorming   Mon Jul 30, 2012 11:47 am

Deathbite42 wrote:
You evolve in both. Your population really resides in both. They affect the evolution of both. Let me explain. Imagine you are a species whose lifespan lasts bilions of years. you also have a massive lab. In one, you put a self-contained jungle. It has many creatures, from monkeys to snakes. The other is a sea with even more. That makes for a LOT of wildlife. But one species is special. His name is The Saltwater Crocodile, and he can live in both. You give him a bridge they can use to freely move from vat to vat. You will see that there evolve both monkeys that crawl into trees to evade him, and fish with scales he cannot break. However, let's say there is a leopard with more bite power than him. It lives in the jungle. The prior mentioned fish will only withstand the crocodile's bite power, because it will never meeet a jaguar.
The problem is that with our system, it gives ETOs an unfair advantage, because they have a chance to evolve in every biome that they pass through, making their mutation probability much higher. However, I think I've been overlooking an obvious solution, which is to divide their modified odds in step 3 by the number of biomes they inhabit.

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