CompSci 94 FOCUS, Fall 2021

Course Announcements

CompSci 94FS
Introduction to Programming
Via Animation and 3D Virtual Worlds

This course is part of the Virtual Realities, Fictional Worlds, and Games FOCUS Cluster.

CompSci 94 is an introductory programming course that teaches fundamental computer science concepts and animation concepts. This version of CompSci 94 uses the tool Alice 3 to create 3-D virtual worlds. You will learn programming constructs such as repetition (calculating how many steps a person needs to walk to their car), selection (deciding which animal is the tallest), and organizing data (grouping penguins to waddle together), along with how to control objects (raise hands, flap wings, move, turn, spin, walk, etc.). You will learn animation concepts such as how to position 3-D objects in a 3-D space, moving a camera between different tripods, and creating events (when the person is close to the door, have the door automatically open).

This is a hands on flipped course. Before class you will watch videos and take an online quiz. During class we will briefly review the material and then you will write a program in class every day, working with a partner on zoom, designing 3-D virtual worlds. Outside of class projects will be done alone, unless otherwise stated.

ATTENDANCE REQUIRED: Class attendance is REQUIRED since we program in class everyday. I need to know in advance if you have an excused absence for not attending class. You will need to fill out the extension form (on the forms tab) if you miss class as you must makeup the work. For those in different time zones we will setup a separate time to meet.

LAPTOP or Computer: You will need a laptop or computer. Note that a Chromebook or ipad will not substitute, you will need a laptop or computer. As a backup Duke will have a Virtual Machine (VM), but Alice will be much slower on the VM.

CompSci 94 will introduce you to the world of computer science and you will learn how to make impressive animations for your other courses or clubs. CompSci 94 is intended as a non-majors course to give you a feel for programming, while blending in animation concepts. If you want to take a second computer science course after this course, CompSci 94 will prepare you well for CompSci 101, though you could also take CompSci 101 without having CompSci 94. CompSci 101 is also a beginner's course, uses a different programming language (python), focuses more on processing data, and covers programming more in depth with more programming assignments.

You cannot get credit for this course if you have taken CompSci 101 or CompSci 201.

Required Background:

No experience necessary, this is an introductory course.

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