During the visit of the Minister of Higher Education, Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin, University Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) displayed D.I.A.N.A at the UTM Research Open Day on 6th February 2023.
A real time-hologram avatar, created and trained as a virtual assistant, her capabilities were stated to include communicating with humans via spoken natural language, understanding what users say and responding to them effectively.
“D.I.A.N.A stands for Digital Security and Social Intelligent Assistant. She is a virtual female human-like avatar with our local Malaysian identity appearance. Furthermore, she can promote our unique Malaysian culture and have the potential to become our digital ambassador,” said one of the project leaders, Dr Ajune Wanis Ismail.
“DIANA is a hologram assistant that can be programmed to know whatever we intend her to have. Equipped with the AI brain and human-like speech with the help of the Natural Language Processing technique, the first version D.I.A.N.A (D.I.A.N.A 1.0) can interact and answer questions related to UTM,” added Dr Ajune.
“She is equipped with facts about UTM, making her a considered UTM brand persona in the digital version. With her ability to think and act like humans, she may become our virtual assistant and loyal companion, one day!
“In the form of mobile apps, D.I.A.N.A can benefit users as a protector and educator
towards a safer society in the digital world.
“To ensure D.I.A.N.A can reach out to people at all levels, besides hologram technology; we have also deployed Augmented Reality (AR) technology so that D.I.A.N.A can pop up on smartphone screens. The AR-based DIANA has the same ability as our hologram,” he concluded his statement.
According to UTM’s News Hub, Dr. Ajune Wanis Ismail and her technical teams from Mixed and Virtual Environment Research Lab (Mivielab), component of the UTM ViCubeLab Research Group from the Faculty of Computing, created the first version of D.I.A.N.A. Dr Norhaida Mohd Suaib and Dr Md Sah Hj Salam from the UTM ViCubeLab Research Group are also involved.
D.I.A.N.A. was financed by the UTMICONIC programme, which was managed by Assoc Prof Dr Anazida Zainal, with Dr Ajune Wanis serving as a project leader for the front-end holographic system and its core engine. Dr Fo’ad Rohani and Prof Dr Hamdan Said, who have been selected as Project Leaders, have also provided substantial technical input.