Put AI to Work
April 15-18, 2019
New York, NY

Game engines and machine learning

Paris Buttfield-Addison (Secret Lab), Mars Geldard (University of Tasmania), Tim Nugent (Lonely Coffee)
4:55pm5:35pm Wednesday, April 17, 2019
Interacting with AI
Location: Regent Parlor
Secondary topics:  Deep Learning and Machine Learning tools, Reinforcement Learning
Average rating: *****
(5.00, 9 ratings)



Prerequisite knowledge

  • Familiarity with AI principles (useful but not required)

What you'll learn

  • Further your understanding of machine learning fundamentals and solve problems with game technologies


Games are wonderful contained problem spaces, making them great places to explore AI—even if you’re not a game developer. Paris Buttfield-Addison, Mars Geldard, and Tim Nugent teach you how to use Unity to train, explore, and manipulate intelligent agents that learn. You’ll train a quadruped to walk, then train it to explore, fetch, and manipulate the world. It’s a little bit technical, a little bit creative.

Join Paris, Mars, and Tim to learn how to use game technologies such as Unity to further your understanding of machine learning fundamentals and solve problems.

Topics include:

  • How video game engines are a perfect environment to constrain a problem and train an agent
  • How easy it is to get started, using Unity
  • How to build up a model and use it in the engine to explore a particular idea or problem
Photo of Paris Buttfield-Addison

Paris Buttfield-Addison

Secret Lab

Paris Buttfield-Addison is a cofounder of Secret Lab, a game development studio based in beautiful Hobart, Australia. Secret Lab builds games and game development tools, including the multi-award-winning ABC Play School iPad games, the BAFTA- and IGF-winning Night in the Woods, the Qantas airlines Joey Playbox games, and the Yarn Spinner narrative game framework. Previously, Paris was a mobile product manager for Meebo (acquired by Google). Paris particularly enjoys game design, statistics, blockchain, machine learning, and human-centered technology. He researches and writes technical books on mobile and game development (more than 20 so far) for O’Reilly; he recently finished writing Practical AI with Swift and is currently working on Head First Swift. He holds a degree in medieval history and a PhD in computing. Paris loves to bring machine learning into the world of practical and useful. You can find him on Twitter as @parisba.

Photo of Mars Geldard

Mars Geldard

University of Tasmania

Marina Rose Geldard (Mars) is a technologist from Down Under in Tasmania. Entering the world of technology relatively late as a mature-age student, she has found her place in the world: an industry where she can apply her lifelong love of mathematics and optimization. She compulsively volunteers at industry events, dabbles in research, and serves on the executive committee for her state’s branch of the Australian Computer Society (ACS) as well as the AUC. She’s writing Practical Artificial Intelligence with Swift for O’Reilly and working on machine learning projects to improve public safety through public CCTV cameras in her hometown of Hobart.

Photo of Tim Nugent

Tim Nugent

Lonely Coffee

Tim Nugent pretends to be a mobile app developer, game designer, tools builder, researcher, and tech author. When he isn’t busy avoiding being found out as a fraud, Tim spends most of his time designing and creating little apps and games he won’t let anyone see. He also spent a disproportionately long time writing his tiny little bio, most of which was taken up trying to stick a witty sci-fi reference in…before he simply gave up. He’s writing Practical Artificial Intelligence with Swift for O’Reilly and building a game for a power transmission company about a naughty quoll. (A quoll is an Australian animal.)

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Picture of Paris Buttfield-Addison
Paris Buttfield-Addison | COFOUNDER
04/28/2019 11:48am EDT

Hi Rob! That’s at OSCON! We’re really excited! Here’s the link: https://conferences.oreilly.com/oscon/oscon-or/public/schedule/detail/76096

04/28/2019 4:41am EDT

You mentioned there was a tutorial version of this coming up at a conference soon but I forgot which conference can you please remind me? Great session By The Way!

04/19/2019 5:37am EDT

great, great, great! I literally can’t wish for more information within 40 mins.