Comp 600.359:

Projects in Computer Graphics and Multimedia

Video Triptik

Course Syllabus



Jonathan Cohen
Office Hours in NEB 218-B
by appointment


Projects in Computer Graphics and Multimedia is a project rather than a lecture-oriented course. Students collaboratively plan and implement a large-scale project over the span of the entire semester. From initial brainstorming to investigation of existing systems to the development of a full-scale system, students shape a project into something that may be useful to either the research community or the general public. As part of this project, students read materials about relevant subjects and present their findings to the rest of the class. Students learn to work in small groups on project components and to maintain interfaces between the components to create the full project. Course meetings involve brainstorming sessions, student presentations of material, progress reports, and demos with collaborative feedback.

This semester's proposed project area is called Video Triptik. It is a first-person navigation system that uses video to guide someone from one place to another. Think "Video MapQuest". The project involves building a video database by walking around campus or driving around Baltimore using GPS-guided positional measurements. Using this database, the project system takes in user queries and extracts customized video experiences to guide the user from one place to another. Possible application areas include a tour of the Johns Hopkins Homewood Campus and an automobile navigation system. The final project will incorporate a web-based system for database queries and updates.

Students should have a background in computer science or in film. CS students must have completed Data Structures (600.226) and at least one 300-level course with a semester programming project (or comparable experience). Film students should provide an appropriate faculty reference to the instructor. Both CS and film students must get approval of the instructor for registration.

Some Relevant Topics


Topics for reading will be determined throughout the semester. There is no required course textbook.


Final course grades will be determined according to the following criteria: These criteria will be evaluated both by the professor and by the students. Students will receive feedback midway through the semester so they can try to improve any problem areas.

As part of class participation, attendance is expected. If you are going to miss class, I want to know about it as well as a reason. Plan to miss no more than maybe two classes during the semester. Remember, this class is not about lectures and exams, but group discussions and collaborations. Thus, attendance is crucial.

Grades are not assigned according to a curve, so it is possible for all students to take an active role throughout the semester and thus achieve high grades.

Honor Code

Due to the collaborative nature of this course, plagiarism among students is not expected to be a big concern. However, it is always important to give proper credit for all work. In this course, that includes giving honest information on self- and peer-evaluations as well as giving proper credit for all code and presentation materials.

On-line Course Information

This syllabus is available on the world-wide web at:
From this site there will be updated links to all sorts of relevant course information. There will likely be web pages developed by the students available linked from this site as well.

January 28, 2002