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Introduction to the course Aug 23, 2010 - Day 1. Object-oriented Programming thru Video Games TIDE 1840 Harry Howard Tulane University. THE SYLLABUS. Rationale.

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Introduction to the course aug 23 2010 day 1 l.jpg

Introduction to the courseAug 23, 2010 - Day 1

Object-oriented Programming thru Video Games

TIDE 1840

Harry Howard

Tulane University


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THE SYLLABUS

OOP thru Video Games - Harry Howard - Tulane University


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Rationale

Today’s students have grown up in a multimedia world – and to motivate them, instructors must relate students’ classroom experience to that world. The Alice 3D programming environment is a teaching tool for such students. It uses 3D graphics and a drag-and-drop interface to teach introductory object-oriented computer programming with a more engaging, less frustrating experience. It makes it easy to create an animation for telling a story, playing an interactive game, or a video to share on the web. In Alice, 3D objects (e.g., people, animals, and vehicles) populate a virtual world, and the student's task it to create a program to animate the objects. With Alice's interactive interface, students can drag and drop graphic tiles to create a program, where the instructions correspond to standard statements in a production oriented programming language, such as Java, C++, and C#. Alice allows students to immediately see how their animation programs run, enabling them to easily understand the relationship between the programming statements and the behavior of objects in their animation. By manipulating the objects in their virtual world, students gain experience with all the programming constructs typically taught in an introductory programming course.

OOP thru Video Games - Harry Howard - Tulane University


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Objective

  • For the student to learn the basic principles of object-oriented computer programming using Alice.

OOP thru Video Games - Harry Howard - Tulane University


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Outcomes

  • For you to demonstrate your attainment of the goal of the course, you will perform the following tasks:

    • Class discussion. Because the TIDE course meets only once a week, you are expected to attend every session and to come to class prepared to go over the readings assigned. (45%)

    • Final project. On the last day of class you will present to the class a project that shows what you have learned during the course. (50%)

    • Participate in an EEG experiment. (5%)

OOP thru Video Games - Harry Howard - Tulane University


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EEG

OOP thru Video Games - Harry Howard - Tulane University


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Other course topics

  • Code of Academic Integrity

  • Students with disabilities

  • Please, no food or drink in here!

OOP thru Video Games - Harry Howard - Tulane University


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The textbook

OOP thru Video Games - Harry Howard - Tulane University


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Schedule of readings

OOP thru Video Games - Harry Howard - Tulane University


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Contact

  • Prof. Harry Howard

  • 862-3417 (voice mail 24 hours a day)

  • Newcomb Hall 322-D

  • Office hours: MTW 4-5 & by appointment (the link goes to my home page, which displays my Google calendar)

  • Course home page

    • http://www.tulane.edu/~howard/TIDE1840/

OOP thru Video Games - Harry Howard - Tulane University


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Electronic communications

  • I will send you e-mail on a regular basis – you must check your e-mail on a regular basis!

    • If you want to use a non-Tulane address, e-mail me a message to that effect from the address.

  • I will post my presentation to the class website after every class.

OOP thru Video Games - Harry Howard - Tulane University


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Course administration

  • Go over roster

OOP thru Video Games - Harry Howard - Tulane University


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Chapter 1.1

GETTING STARTED WITH ALICE

OOP thru Video Games - Harry Howard - Tulane University


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Getting Alice

  • The book includes a CD that is out of date and is limited to Windows

  • The most recent version is available at: www.alice.org

OOP thru Video Games - Harry Howard - Tulane University


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Why learn about programming computers?

  • OK, you tell me.

OOP thru Video Games - Harry Howard - Tulane University


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How you will learn to program

  • Again, if you already have experience, tell me.

  • How Alice is different

    • You create a program by dragging objects around on the screen using the mouse

OOP thru Video Games - Harry Howard - Tulane University


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Simple ideas that make up a computer program

  • A list of instructions

  • Ifs

  • Repeating behavior

  • Breaking things up into smaller pieces

    • problem decomposition = stepwise refinement = top-down design == reductionism

  • Compute a result

  • "Learning to think about arranging a sequence of instructions to carry out a task is probably the most valuable part of learning to program"

OOP thru Video Games - Harry Howard - Tulane University


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Alice concepts

  • Virtual world

    • … which begins as a template for an initial scene

  • Objects and 3D models

  • From 3 dimensions to 6 degrees of freedom

    • Each dimension has two directions of movement: 3D x 2 dir. = 6 degrees of freedom (dof) or 'orientation'

  • Center of an object

    • Set for each object by its creator, usually at the center of its bounding box or its center of mass

  • Distance

    • measured from center

  • Position

    • the point where the object’s center is in the world

  • Animation

OOP thru Video Games - Harry Howard - Tulane University


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Getting started

  • Tips & techniques

    • 3D text

    • 2D graphic images (billboards)

OOP thru Video Games - Harry Howard - Tulane University


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Exercises

  • Island

  • Winter

  • Snowpeople pile

  • Tea party

  • Soldiers on deck

OOP thru Video Games - Harry Howard - Tulane University


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Next time

Chapter 1.2

Alice Concepts; Tips & Techniques 1: Special Effects


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