"From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs" - Marx

Creating a VR Art project: Syllabus

Instructor: Josephine Anstey, jranstey@buffalo.edu

Office Hours: 

Understanding Virtual Reality, William Sherman and Alan Craig, Morgan Kaufman 2003, ISBN 1-55860-353-0

Where and When
CFA 265/66, W 4:00 - 7:50

Attendance: If you are sick or unable to attend a class, email me before the class. More than 3 absences without explanation will impact your grade.

Attendance and participation 50%, final project 50%.
Plagiarism will result in a failing grade for that assignment or project.

This is a studio class in which students are encouraged to create imaginative and compelling interactive graphic and audio environments for Media Study's immersive virtual reality system. The system has a projection-based, 3-D stereo VR display with one large screen, and a tracking system and "wand," with joystick and programmable buttons, to create the interface between the user and the virtual environment (VE). Immersive VR puts the user inside the virtual world with the virtual objects rather than outside, viewing the world on a monitor and manipulating an avatar of herself.

We expect that students will bring their unique vision and experience to the project and varying degrees of technical expertise. They will acquire or expand their knowledge of the Ygdrasil VR authoring system, 3D modeling, and 3D graphics programming. Creating responsive VR requires a wide-variety of skills and students are encouraged to gather into collaborative teams. We will also look at  existing VR art experiences, artists and research  issues. However the main purpose of the course is to complete wholly or in part a substantive VR project, that will be exhibited in a final show.  Students are not only responsible for the content and logistics of the show.

During the semester students will make two presentations - one practical and one analytical, as well as reporting regularly on the progress of their work.

Making a node
Weekly Schedule
Presentation List
General Information

University Statements

Disabilities: If you have a disability (physical, learning or psychological) which may make it difficult for you to carry out the course work as outlined, and/or requires accomodations such as recruiting note takers, readers, or extended time on exams and assignments, please contact the Office of Disability Services, 25 Capen Hall, 645 2608, and also your instructor during the first two weeks of class. ODS will provide you with information and will review appropriate arrangements for reasonable accomodations.

Plagiarism is literary theft and a betrayal of trust. The term is derived from the Latin word for kidnapper and refers to the act of signing one's own name to words, phrases, or ideas which are the literary property of another. Plagiarism comes in many forms, all to be avoided: outright copying, or paraphrase, or a mosaic or disguised use of words and phrases from an unacknowledged source.  To avoid plagiarism, make it your habit to put quotation marks around words or phrases, or to isolate and indent longer passages, that you are using from someone else's writing. And be sure to cite the source, in a footnote or endnote, or within parentheses in the text. The penalties for plagiarism can be severe: from an F for the particular assignment, to an F for the course, to referral of the case to the Dean of Undegraduate Education for administrative judgement. If you are unsure about how to use and document sources, please consult your instructor.

WEAPONS AS PROPS: If you are planning a student production which involves using any prop which could be interpreted to be a weapon [toy gun, BB gun, knife, etc.] And you are planning to shoot on the UB campus or any other public place, you must obtain written permission from Campus Security or the equivalent authority before you shoot. If you do not you will face serious problems including possible expulsion from the university.