Projects: Flyby


Class: Computer Graphics (CS 488) / Linear Algebra (MATH 225)
Term: Fall 2006
Status: Complete
Partners: None
Technologies: Java, JOGL, OpenGL


This was a project for the Computer Graphics class, which focused on OpenGL programming. The goal was to create a program that could load topographic data and display it in a 3-D flythrough window, with complete control over the camera. Once I finished this project, I adapted it to showcase the math involved for a project in my Linear Algebra class.

This program taught me a lot about the math involved in a 3-D game where the camera can move. I learned about polar coordinates, and how they can be applied to the camera's pitch/yaw controls. I also learned more about OpenGL rendering, including dynamically changing colors and having the camera itself move.

Given the opportunity to do the project again, I would add more bells and whistles. One thing I would have liked to have added to it is texture mapping, so the landscapes don't look quite so flat. I eventually learned texture mapping for my final project, but it would definitely make the flyby more engaging to the eye. Another thing I would add is the ability to 'anchor' the mouse in the center of screen. Presently, the program responds to mouse motion, but eventually you move the mouse out of the window and have to scroll it back. This isn't a major feature, but it would definately make the user experience more smooth.