Digital Image Synthesis, Fall 2006

Milestones of computer animation*

1982 Tron The first movie that mixes CGI and live actors.
1986 Luxo Jr. The first film by Pixar.
1993 Jurassic Park The first movie to feature realistic acting CGI.
1995 Toy Story The first full-length 3D animation movie.
1997 Geri's game features the use of subdivision surfaces.
1999 Star Wars I has the first full-featured CGI character for the entire movie.
2001 Final Fantasy The first full-length animation to attempt realistic people.
2001 Shrek The first winner of Oscar best animated movie.
2002 Bunny The first animation film to use radiosity.
2002 LOTR 2 has the first realistic acting CGI character for the entire movie.
* This list is solely based on my own opinion.

Course overview

One primary goal of computer graphics is to synthesize realistic images which are indistinguishable from real photographs. Methods of this category were very slow. However, recent progresses on GPUs have made interactive realistic rendering possible. This course will cover realistic image synthesis techniques that could be or have been used to make animations such as Finding Nemo and games such Half Life.

Meeting time: 13:30pm-16:20pm every Thursday
Classroom: CSIE Room 111
Instructor: Yung-Yu Chuang
Teaching assistant: Shan-Yung Yang
Office hours: Send me email to make an appointment or just drop by my office.
TA Office hours: 3:30pm-5:20pm Wednesday, Room 108.
Mailing list: Subscribe via this website.
Reference books: We will basically follow the book, Physically Based Rendering: From Theory to Implementation.
Physically Based Rendering: From Theory to Implementation, Matt Pharr and Greg Humphreys, Morgan Kaufmann, 2004
In addition, we will use readings from books, journals and proceedings.
Principles of Digital Image Synthesis, Andrew Galssner, Morgan Kaufmann.
An Introduction to Ray Tracing, Andrew Galssner, Morgan Kaufmann.
Radiosity and Realistic Image Synthesis, Michael Cohen and John Wallace, Academic Press.
Realistic Image Synthesis Using Photon Mapping, Henrik Wann Jensen, AK Peters.
Advanced Global Illumination, Philip Dutre, Kavita Bala and Phillips Bekaert, AK Peters.
Realistic Ray Tracing, Peter Shirley and Keith Morley, AK Peters.
GPU Gems, Randima Fernando, Addison Wesley.
GPU Gems II, Matt Pharr and Randima Fernando, Addison Wesley.

Grading: (subject to change)
  • programming assignments X 3 (50%)
  • class participation (5%)
  • final project (45%)

Syllabus (topics we might cover):
  • Light transport and the rendering equation
  • Ray tracing: basic algorithm
  • Ray tracing: acceleration
  • Monte Carlo method
  • Photon mapping
  • Shadowing
  • Materials: BRDF
  • Materials: mapping techniques
  • Exotic materials
  • Radiosity
  • Real-time rendering