Author Topic: MS Agents and Hal  (Read 1756 times)


  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 1
    • View Profile
MS Agents and Hal
« on: April 22, 2008, 02:21:24 pm »
Hi Folks,

I am new to Ultra Hal but interested in seeing what can be done.  One thing in particular that I am trying to figure out is how to use Ultra Hal with MS Agents.

Let me clarify this a bit further.  Obviously it is simple to have Hal load an MS agent character, whether a free one, a commercially-created one, or one of one's own creation.  It is also fairly easy to get the appropriate skin loaded or, with a bit more effort, to modify a skin to fit a given MS Agent.  

What I am having difficulty tackling is how to get Hal to trigger specific MS Agent states.  For example, how would one trigger the standard IdlingLevel1 state (which has a standard set of animations -- namely, Blink, Idle1_1 and Idle1_2)?  Or how would one trigger a Smile animation at the appropriate time?  Would this be called from hal6.uhp or can one place agent commands in the database file tables using the Brain editor?

I have tried searching the forums, but although a few folks have mentioned MS agents, there is very little about controlling or triggering MS agents from Hal (there was a posting back in 10/06/2007 that referenced VB Scripting but the thread didn't go on for more than one or two posts).

I gather from reading dozens of the messages posted that some folks who think of themselves as being more into AI programming seem to suspect that fiddling with the interface is merely cosmetics but I think that the human-computer interface is important.  I believe that being able to program the human-computer interface to respond to input in a variety of ways is quite a crucial aspect of maintaining human interest, particularly with a chatterbot (not meant negatively) like Hal that requires a long time (hundreds of hours?) of training through conversation. It is not just a matter of novelty.  It is a matter of triggering what appears to the user as an appropriate response from one's Hal.  It provides reinforcement for the human to keep "teaching".

Anyway, I am sure I have already said too much for a newbie.

Thanks for any input you may be able to provide.


  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 67
    • View Profile
MS Agents and Hal
« Reply #1 on: April 26, 2008, 02:52:03 pm »
I wanted to reply so you dont think people are ignoring you.
I never got into programming the Agents much.
Im not sure how much help i could be, but i know i read a few posts about triggers for Agents and Hap characters.
Some of the Hap files may give ideas.

The Agent characters are very limited and mostly depend on whats been recorded for emotional responces.
Personally i would also look into MASH and MASS for working with the agent files directly.

You might want to go with Hap and forget the agents.
I remembered these after i wrote this.

<HAPBACK>picture.jpg</HAPBACK> If a 3D character is loaded this will change its background image to picture.jpg

<HAPFILE>filename</HAPFILE> Tells the Haptek engine to load a haptek file which can be a .htr file or a .hap file

<HAPTEXT>haptek_command</HAPTEXT> Sends the text haptek_command to the haptek engine which can execute haptek commands.

There is a plug in called the vrHaptek.uhp Thats can be edited to do what you want but with Haptek characters.

Personally i dont like the looks of some of the heads and bodys, but they can be changed pretty easily if you cant find one you like.
« Last Edit: April 26, 2008, 03:11:33 pm by TechSteele »


  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 321
    • View Profile
MS Agents and Hal
« Reply #2 on: April 27, 2008, 04:29:41 am »
Hi vonHerder,
You can call up msagent animations with the following within a script written for HAL:


Hope this helps,



  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 4
    • View Profile
Re: MS Agents and Hal
« Reply #3 on: February 01, 2017, 03:20:15 pm »
I know this is an old topic, and I have also started a new topic on this, but I want to cover my bases.  Where in Hal's brain to you put a command like that?