Point Based Graphics

Course Information


General Information

Lecture Hours:

Friday from 14h00 to 17h00

Starting January 8th

Lecture Room:

CSC 363

Lab Room:

AMMI Laboratory


Prof. Pierre Boulanger


Athabasca Hall 411





Course Text Book:

Point Based Graphics Book

Course Syllabus:


Course Readings:

Readings Material

Extra Course Material:


Course Information

CMPUT610: Point Based Graphics


Point primitives have experienced a major "renaissance" in recent years, and considerable research has been devoted to efficient representation, modeling, processing, and rendering of point-sampled geometry. There are two main reasons for this new interest in points: First, we have witnessed a dramatic increase in the polygonal complexity of computer graphics models. The overhead of managing, processing, and manipulating very large polygonal-mesh connectivity information has led many leading researchers to question the future utility of polygons as the fundamental graphics primitive. Second, modern 3D digital photography and 3D scanning systems acquire both the geometry and the appearance of complex, real-world objects. These techniques generate huge volumes of point samples, which constitute discrete building blocks of 3D object geometry and appearance, much as pixels are the digital elements for images. This course presents the latest research results in point-based computer graphics. After an overview of the key research issues, 3D scanning devices are discussed, and novel concepts for mathematical representation of point-sampled shapes are presented. The course describes methods for high-performance and high-quality rendering of point models, including advanced shading, anti-aliasing, and transparency. It also presents efficient data structures for hierarchical rendering on modern graphics processors and summarizes methods for geometric processing, filtering, and re-sampling of point models. Other topics include: a framework for shape modeling of point-sampled geometry, including Boolean operations and free-form deformations, and Pointshop3D, an open-source framework that facilitates design of new algorithms for point-based graphics.


Course Topics

3D Sensing Technologies


Point-Based Surface Representations


Algorithms for High Quality Point Rendering


Efficient Data Structures


Processing, Sampling and Filtering of Point Models


Efficient Simplification of Point Sampled-Geometry


Pointshop3D: An Interactive System for Point-Based Surface Editing


Physics Based Animation

Course Requirements



There will be three homework assignments


Class Participation

Students must keep up with readings and actively participate at the weekly meeting



There will be an individual semester project, culminating in a final 8 pages report in IEEE format and a presentation at a day workshop. Progress and check points before the final due date will count toward the final grade.



Each student must present their project during a daylong workshop on point-based-graphics. Each presentation is 15 minutes with 5 minutes of questions.

Grading Policy