ECS 177 - Visualization

CRN #66865

Professor: Nina Amenta

Class meets:MWF 1:10-2:00, 1007 Giedt

Discussion section:Wds 4:10-5:00, 1007 Giedt

Prof. Amenta's lab hours:Mon 3:10-5:00, 71 Kemper

Textbook: Alexandru C. Telea, Data Visualization: Principles and Practice. Published by A.K. Peters.
The text will be supplemented with handouts and online readings.
Other Books: On reserve at Sheilds Library.
Edward R. Tufte, Envisioning Information.
Shroeder, Martin and Lorensen, The Visualization Toolkit
Woo, Neider, Davis and Shreiner, OpenGL Programming Guide
Also recommended:
Engel, Hadwiger, Kniss, Rezk-Salama and Weiskopf, Real-time volume graphics

Prerequisites: ECS 175 or equivalent experience with 3D graphics.


Visualization is the art and science of using computers to convey information. It provides an opportunity to develop our technical skills in computer graphics, and at the same time learn about good graphic and user interface design, and, in addition, to place our work in interesting scientific and social contexts.


The main focus of the class will be four programming projects.

There will also be reading and writing homework assignments, to encourage us to think carefully about the design aspects of our projects and reinforce mathematical ideas. In addition to lectures on the technical and mathematical aspects of computer visualization, we will have in-class discussions of design issues, centered around the projects. The overall goal will be to inculcate habits of excellence.


Grades will be determined using this formula (approximately):

Projects 70%
Written homework 15%
In-class and on-line participation 15%


Reading and Homework Assignments



We'll use SmartSite for the class Wiki. As we find useful Web pages, or figure out helpful tips, we can post them there to help the rest of the class through the projects.