Computer Animation - Algorithms and Techniques

4003-572-39 / 4005-763-39 

(Winter 2010-2011)


Instructor: Joe Geigel
Office: 70-3527
Office Hours: TR 10-noon
Course URL:
Class Lecture MW 4-6
Classroom:  GOL (70)-2455

PREREQUISITE: 4003-570/4005-761 Computer Graphics I  or 4002-501/735 Foundations of 2D Graphics Programming 
or by permission of instructor


This course takes a look at Computer Animation from a programmer’s perspective.  It will investigate the theory, algorithms and techniques for describing and programming motion for virtual 3D worlds.    Approaches that will be explored include keyframing systems, kinematics, motion of articulated figures, and procedural and behavioral systems.   This course is a programming-oriented course with major deliverables including the implementation of techniques presented in lecture as well as a final project concentrating on an area of a student’s choice.  Students taking this course for Graduate credit will be required to read and summarize recent journal papers from the computer animation literature.


These texts will supplement the material presented in lecture.  In addition,  research papers from the computer animation literature will be referenced.  A list of papers, organized by topic is available here.  Note that students will be required to submit short summaries of selected papers.

Computer Animation: Algorithm and Techniques, 2nd ed.

Computer Animation: Algorithms and Techniques,2nd Edition,  by Rick Parent (Morgan Kauffmann, 2007), ISBN: 
Physics for Game Developers book OPTIONAL

Physics for Game Developers by David M. Bourg (O'Reilly, 2002), ISBN: 

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of this course, students will be able to:

Requirements and Grading

In Computer Graphics, much like many other areas of Computer Science, the best way to learn is by doing.  Whereas the theory of animation will be discussed in the lectures, the real learning occurs when implementing this theory into code.  Thus, this course relies heavily on programming tasks.
The major deliverables for this course are: 
In addition, students taking the course for graduate credit will need to also complete the following.

The final grade will be determined using the following weights:

Graduate  Undergraduate
Project 30% 35%
Assignments 30% 35%
Weekly Activities 20% 30%
Grad Report

Paper Presentation 10%

Policy on Late Submissions

It is extremely important to continue to make progress as the course progresses.   If you forsee any problems with meeting deliverable deadlines, please see the instructor well in advance of the deadline that might be missed we can attempt to work out alternate arrangements.    Late submissions without  prior permission or notification will be heavy penalized.

Policy on Academic Dishonesty

Please be aware of the Computer Science Policy on Academic Dishonesty as well the RIT Policy on Academic Dishonesty found by following the links.  

Any form of academic dishonesty will not be tolerated.  
Consequences of any discovered academic dishonesty incidents will be applied as specified in these policies.  

last updated 11/25/10