Realistic Human Path Planning using Fluid Simulation
Burgess, Rene G.
Darken, Christian J.
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This paper describes an approach for obtaining very realistic movement paths through a terrain set by applying the properties of a fluid simulation to produce intuitively human-like results. Similar to the concepts described in the physical world by the Principle of Least Action, realistic paths for human movement generally tend to follow "natural lines of drift". This common military term describes a method of route selection based on least effort expenditure (or highest possible speed) enroute to a goal (or destination). We implemented a fluid simulation (gas diffusion) as a means of determing these routes through a digital terrain set. This fairly simple technique generates what appear to be very realistic avenues of approach for large vehicle formations or for individual vehicles traveling at high rates of speed. This approach seems quite promising for modeling human movement tendencies and appears superior to classic path finding or optimal route selection methods in terms of representing human-like behavior.
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