CS 4600: Computer Graphics, Fall 2018

Course Information

Lectures: WEB L103, Mon/Wed, 11:50am - 1:10pm


Ladislav Kavan

Lead TM:

Saman Sepehri


Course objectives:

Gain hands-on coding experience with computer graphics techniques and algorithms covering 2D graphics, 3D graphics and computer animation. This course focuses on key algorithmic techniques and mathematical foundations, not on specific tools or software APIs. OpenGL will be mentioned only briefly, for a comprehensive introduction to OpenGL and shader (GPU) programming please refer to CS 5610/6610 (Interactive Computer Graphics).

Topics covered:

  1. Mathematics for computer graphics: linear algebra, matrices, dot/cross products, homogeneous coordinates, linear and projective transformations, quaternions.
  2. 2D Graphics: Colors, raster formats, Fourier and DCT transformations, image file formats, JPEG compression, image deformation, rasterization.
  3. 3D Graphics: Projections and view frustum transformations, visibility algorithms, 3D scene representation, ray tracing.
  4. Animation (or 4D Graphics - adding the time dimension): Skeletal animation and skinning algorithms.

Tentative schedule:

Date Topic Due
Aug 20, 22 Introduction to graphics  
Aug 27, 29 Vectors, matrices, quaternions
Sep 03, 05 Images, raster graphics
Sep 10, 12 Image compression, file formats
Sep 17, 19 Rasterization Assignment 1
Sep 24, 26 3D Graphics, projections
Oct 01, 03 Basic OpenGL concepts Assignment 2
Oct 08, 10 Fall break
Oct 15, 17 Visibility algorithms
Oct 22, 24 Animation
Oct 29, 31 Shading and illumination models Assignment 3
Nov 05, 07 Raytracing 1
Nov 12, 14 Raytracing 2 Assignment 4
Nov 19, 21 Geometry processing, textures
Nov 26, 28 Skinning algorithms (character animation) Assignment 5
Dec 03, 05 Review Final project

Homework Assignments and Lecture Notes:

Available through our Canvas site


The best place to ask are Canvas Discusson Boards

Textbooks (optional):

Shirley & Marschner, Fundamentals of Computer Graphics, 4th edition.

Gortler, Foundations of 3D Computer Graphics, 1st edition.

Useful links:

Online C++ tutorials

Online OpenGL tutorials

ACM Digital Library (SIGGRAPH papers and recorded presentations)

ACM SIGGRAPH 2018 Student Volunteer Program (there will be similar program at SIGGRAPH 2019)

Undergraduate Research Opportunities (UROP)

Ke-Sen Huang's Computer Graphics Resources (non-official but very useful)

Policies and guidelines:


In this course, any of the following cases is classifed as academic misconduct: 1) sharing your homework assignment solution or its part with another student, or 2) requesting or using parts of homework assignment solutions prepared by another person, or 3) re-using code from third parties (such as code fragments from online tutorials, software libraries, or books). Academic misconduct as defined above will result in a failing grade sanction, according to the School of Computing Academic Misconduct Policy.