Dr. Ian Lane Davis, former Technical Director at Activision’s Santa Monica studio, is widely acknowledged as one of the top Artificial Intelligence experts in the video game industry. His direct game credits include: Empire Earth® II, a PC Gamer Editor’s Choice award winner garnering a 94% review score, (2005), Vivendi Universal Games; Dungeon Siege®: Legends of Aranna™ , an Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences "Computer Role Playing Game of the Year” finalist , (2003), Microsoft Game Studios; Empire Earth: The Art of Conquest™ (2002), Sierra Entertainment; Jane’s® Attack Squadron (2002), Xicat Interactive; and for Activision Publishing, Inc., Star Trek®: Armada II™ (2001), Call to Power II (2000), Star Trek®: Armada™ (2000), Civilization®: Call to Power™ (1999), Battlezone® (1998), Dark Reign: Rise of the Shadowhand™ (1998), and Dark Reign: The Future of War™ (1997).
Active in the game community, Dr. Davis serves as a Peer Panel Leader for the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences Peer Panel for Gameplay Engineering and is a trusted advisor to key industry publishers. Currently authoring the definitive AI and games textbook for academic and industry training along with academia’s top AI researchers, in the fall of 2005 he accepted a guest professorship at MIT, teaching “Characters in Video Games,” a topics in comparative media studies course. Recently appointed Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Game Development, he is a highly sought speaker who presents in academic and game focused venues and has been interviewed for print, online and television media.
Davis earned his doctorate in Artificial Intelligence and Robotics from Carnegie Mellon University, one of the nation’s leading computer engineering schools. Here, he applied his talents in Artificial Intelligence to autonomous cross-country navigation in the Highly Mobile Multi-Purpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV) for the Department of Defense, researched the inspection of aging aircraft via the Autonomous NonDestructive Inspector (ANDI) for the FAA, and analyzed and designed systems for the Lunar and Earthbound Lava Tube Explorer. For a comprehensive look at the Doctor's books, publications, speeches and more, visit our Leadership page.
In 1999, Dr. Davis founded Mad Doc® with the goal of developing Triple A titles that expand the game playing experience and broaden the market through creative use of new Networking, Graphics, and AI technologies (Empire Earth® II uses Mad Doc’s Mad3D™ Game Engine and MadAI™ technologies). With Davis at the helm, Mad Doc has quickly become an emerging force in the industry. The team consists of industry veterans with experience in every aspect of game development and an unmatched expertise in Artificial Intelligence. A registered Xbox®, Xbox 360™ and PlayStation®3 developer with a proven record of strong game design and on-time, on-budget delivery, Mad Doc team members are collectively responsible for over 20 million units in the game market worldwide. Currently, Dr. Davis and the Mad Doc team have several titles in production.