CSCI 4229/5229 Computer Graphics, Summer 2011
The course is targeted at students with a wide range of backgrounds in Computer
Graphics, ranging from students with no previous experience to students with
undergraduate courses in Computer Graphics. The course teaches both
fundamental theory of Computer Graphics as well as practical applications using
Lectures cover fundamental techniques of computer graphics such as 2D and 3D
viewing, transformations, drawing lines and polygons, clipping and color to
advanced techniques such as lighting, shadows, textures and shaders. OpenGL is
used to illustrate implementation of these techniques.
Weekly assignments comprise a sequence of increasingly complex OpenGL
programs that seeks to build practical experience using OpenGL. The final
assignment is a course project which is an OpenGL program of the students
Writing portable code that will run on any operating system and any machine
with adequate hardware is emphasized.
There is no midterm or final examination. The grade is entirely based on
weekly assignments (50%) and the course project (50%).
The assignments for the graduate and undergraduate students are the same, but
more is expected from graduate students, especially for the class project.
Students should be comfortable with basic linear algebra, data structures and
algorithms. A familiarity with the C programming language is assumed and all
example programs will be in C. Students should be comfortable programming in a
high level language such as C or C++ for which OpenGL bindings are available.
It is assumed that students know how to compile and link programs.
There is one assignment per week for the first three weeks.
Assignments generally build on previous assignments in that they become more
complex, and code reuse from previous assignments will simplify successive
Assignments may be completed using a computer language and platform of the
student's choice, although C or C++ on a Windows, OS/X or *NIX environment
is preferred. CSEL is available to
complete the assignments and for testing.
Assignments will be graded on a GNU/Linux system. Programs should contain
#ifdef statements to facilitate compilation on this system. Students
using exotic programming languages will be expected to aid the instructor in
setting up a suitable environment for grading the assignments.
Assignments must be submitted via moodle.
Assignments are due at 11:59pm on the due date. The grace period for all
assignments is until 08:00 am the next day. Late assignments will not be
accepted unless previously arranged.
CAETE students are encouraged to submit assignments on the same schedule as on
campus students, but special accomodations will be made on an individual basis.
The course project involves writing a significant graphics program. It is
intended to be approximately one third of the overall course load and is due at
on the last day of class.
Potential projects would be a scientific visualization application, a game or
any application with a heavy graphical emphasis. Students are encouraged to
develop an application that is useful in some other aspect of their studies or
work. To accommodate this students are given wide latitude in terms of
platform and language of implementation. However, in order to facilitate
grading, this should be done in coordination with the instructor.
Students are encouraged to do an oral presentation of their project during
class near the end of the semester. The oral presentation is optional.
All assignments including the course project are to be completed individually.
Exceptions to this rule may be made by prior arrangement if the scope of the
project is particularly ambitious.
Each assignment should reflect each student's individual work. However, code
reuse is permitted, including example code from the class as well as code from
resources on the web. A "safe harbor" in this regard is simply a comment
indicating where code from another source is reused.
Students are responsible for whatever code they turn in. Therefore if you
reuse code, make sure that you understand what the code does and why it does
it. Errors in borrowed code become your responsibility.
Simply turning in borrowed code is not acceptable. It is expected that if you
start with somebody else's code, you should improve on it. You will primarily
be graded on the improvements you make.
Tentative Course Outline
- May 31-Jun 2
- Hello World in OpenGL
- Drawing in 2D
- Homogeneous Coordinates
- Drawing in 3D: Visibility
- June 7-9
- Rendering Objects
- Color and Light
- Jun 14-16
- Jun 21-23
- Rendering Lines and Anti-Aliasing
- Rendering Polygons and Tesselation
- Parametric Curves and Surfaces
- Simple Shadows
- Jun 28-30
- Advanced Shadows
- Show and Tell
- OpenGL: A Primer, 3/E by Edward Angel
- An excellent introduction to the fundamentals of OpenGL. Very readable and
a great way to get started. Inexpensive.
- The OpenGL Programming Guide 7/E The Red Book
- This is a very thorough introduction to OpenGL and is highly recommended.
The 7th edition covers OpenGL 3.1. Older versions of this book are
available online and is
generally sufficient for the course.
- The OpenGL Reference Manual The Blue Book
- The reference manual provides details of OpenGL API. Also available online.
- OpenGL documentation, code and links.
- NeHe OpenGL Tutorials
- A series of tutorials and articles covering simple to complex OpenGL
operations together with implementation for many different platforms.