# Spring 1999 CS302 Assignment #1

by Dan Garcia `(ddgarcia@cs.berkeley.edu)`

## 1. Choose the course you want to design. It should run for ten weeks and should fit into a quarter system curriculum as a three- of four-unit course.

CS5 - Introduction to Computer Animation

This course will cover the fundamentals of computer animation using a hands-on approach. It is intended for those with little or no experience with computer graphics or animation. Enrollment will be limited due to lab space, and preference will be given to freshmen and sophomores. There will be three hours of in-class lecture and one hour of lab a week. The Macintosh animation lab will be open 24 hours, and will be staffed by former CS5 students working on independent animation projects. Grades will be determined from several projects and one large team final project. There will be a department-wide film show at the conclusion of the class, and students will be encouraged to submit their animations to local animation festivals.

## 2. Describe the course prerequisites and design a short entrance exam to help verify that students have the prerequisite knowledge.

The prerequisites for the course are high school trigonometry and vector notation; no prior computer experience is required. A light course-load might be a tacit prerequisite. Animation is a very time-intensive process, so students are discouraged from taking this course and other time-intensive courses simultaneously.

The purpose of this short exam is to verify that you have basic fundamentals necessary for computer animation. If you have trouble, you may wish to consider a crash refresher course.

1. Plot y = 0.5 + sin(2 p w t + a ) from [0,2p] for the following values of w , a : ((1,p/6), (1/2, p))
2. Find the parametric representation of a line between points P0 and P1 as P(t)
3. A positive rotation of ninety degrees around the cartesian Z-axis carries the X-axis to what vector?
4. What is the angle of rotation required to take the vector (1/2, sqrt(3)/2) into the X-axis?
5. What is the magnitude of the vector (1,2,-3)?

## 3. Identify the course content by giving a brief description of what's in each of the ten weeks. (Don't forget to leave time for exams, holidays, and end-of-course reviews.)

The grades for this course are based on the weekly projects, which saves class time. We have also allocated time for an additional midterm evaluation. Any class vacation will be compensated by a corresponding reduction of the CG overview at the end.

## 4. Identify one or two courses for which your course would be a prerequisite, describe what instructors of those courses should expect of your students, and design short entrance exams to help verify that students have learned it.

This course is a prerequisite for:

• CS105 - Advanced Computer Animation
• CS184 - Fundamentals of Computer Graphics

Instructors of these courses should expect graduates of CS5 to understand

• The history of computer animation
• Uses of computer animation
• The full 3D computer animation process, from story to final animation
• The ability to create an complicated animation from scratch.
• Terminology associated with computer animation
• A four-week intensive overview of technical computer graphics
• Modeling
• Rendering
• Sound
• Animation
• Compositing
• Research Areas
• The difference between traditional animation and computer animation.
• Tricks and short-cuts to animate technically difficult things
• Limitations of computer animation (e.g. what can't we simulate)

The following is a short entrance exam to verify students have learned what they should have in CS5

1. List three people and films who made significant contributions to computer animation.
2. List three reasons one would use computer animation
3. Illustrate all steps of the keyframe-based animation process.
4. Hierarchically model a simple figure, like a bicycle, showing the tree and any reasonable constraints.
5. What is "easing out" and describe a function y = f(x) that would implement it.
6. What are fractals and what are they used for in computer animation?
7. On the video screen you will be shown a rough animation. As a director, describe one thing wrong with it in each of the five areas (modeling, rendering, lighting, camera motion and sound) and suggest how to fix them.
8. Contrast computer animation with traditional animation (e.g. what is hard in each, when would you use one over the other)
9. Explain the difference between forward- and inverse-kinematics, and one way to solve the inverse problem.
10. Explain how you would model the following objects: snow, clouds, fire and hair.
11. Explain three research areas of computer graphics and animation.

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