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The UK Chapter of the Eurographics Association (EGUK) presents:-
Theory and Practice of Computer Graphics 2006

University of Teesside, Middlesbrough, UK

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Keynote Talks
  • Prof Marc Cavazza
  • Prof Charles Hansen
  • Prof Stuart Sumida

Prof Marc Cavazza

University of Teesside



"AI-based Interactivity"


Artificial Intelligence techniques have been only marginally relevant to computer graphics. In computer games, elementary AI techniques have been used for character behaviour, but the environment behaviour has remained under the control of scripted procedures or generic Physics engines. Virtual Reality systems have rarely incorporated AI techniques, apart from camera control and some natural language interfaces. Yet, a closer look at the frameworks underlying interactivity in many graphics systems shows the prevalence of discretised behaviour relying on event-based systems. This talk will explore the potential of state-of-the-art AI techniques, such as Qualitative Reasoning, to support behaviour of 3D graphics worlds. The long-term endeavour consists in re-introducing semantics in computer graphics worlds, whose formalisms have been originally developed from the exclusive perspective of real-time visualisation.

Biographical Sketch

Marc Cavazza is Professor of Intelligent Virtual Environments at the University of Teesside. His principal research interest is the use of Artificial Intelligence techniques for Virtual Environments. His most recent research projects were in Interactive Storytelling and the development of AI-based behavioural techniques for Virtual Environments.

He has published over 150 refereed papers in the fields of Human-Computer Interaction, Virtual Reality and Artificial Intelligence. He has been an expert for the European Commission on the Information Society Programme continuously for the past ten years, for several Directorates. From 2002 to 2005, he was co-ordinator of the “ALTERNE” Project (, one of the largest EU-funded projects on Virtual Reality Art. He is now principal investigator at Teesside for the DTI Technology Programme “BARDS” project on Interactive Storytelling, in partnership with Eidos Interactive plc. He serves on the programme committee of numerous conferences on intelligent agents and intelligent graphics, including ACM AAMAS 2006, ACM ACE 2006, Intelligent Virtual Agents 2006, the IFIP International Conference on Entertainment Computing, and Smart Graphics 2006.


Prof Charles Hansen

School of Computing and the Scientific Computing and Imaging Institute, University of Utah

Nadia Magnenat-Thalmann


"Large-Scale Scientific Visualization"


Computers have changed the way we live, work, and even recreate. Now, they are transforming how we think about science, engineering, and medicine. Advances in computational modeling, imaging, and simulation allow researchers to build and test models of increasingly complex phenomena and thus to generate unprecedented amounts of data. These advances have created the need to make corresponding progress in our ability to understand large amounts of data and information arising from multiple sources. Although these machines offer enormous potential for solving very large-scale realistic modeling, simulation, and optimization problems, their effectiveness will hinge upon the ability of human experts to interact with their computations and extract useful information. In fact, to effectively understand and make use of the vast amounts of information being produced is one of the greatest scientific challenges of the 21st Century.

Visual computing, which relies on and takes advantage of, the interplay among techniques of visualization, computer graphics, virtual reality, and imaging and vision, is fundamental to understanding models of complex phenomena, which are often multi-disciplinary in nature. In this talk, I will first provide several examples of ongoing visual computing research at the Scientific Computing and Imaging (SCI) Institute as applied to problems in computational science, engineering, and medicine, then go on to discuss future research opportunities.



Biographical Sketch

Charles (Chuck) Hansen is Professor of Computer Science and an Associate Director of the Scientific Computing and Imaging Institute at the University of Utah, USA.

His research interests span scientific visualization, computer graphics, and high performance computing. Scientific visualization of large scale problems is of key interest and recent work involves taking into consideration time-varying data and exploiting this for speeding up the
visualization process. Other methods for visualizing large amounts of data are multiresolution models and view dependent algorithms. The interest in computer graphics is driven from the scientific visualization perspective but includes parallel algorithms for speeding up global illumination.

Prof. Hansen has been Associate Editor-in-Chief for IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics since August 2003 and guest editor in IEEE Computer Graphics and Applications. Beside having served as a member of Executive committees and program committees on a large number of International conferences, including IEEE Technical Committee on Computer Graphics, 2004 EUROGRAPHICS Workshop on Parallel Graphics and Visualization, IEEE Visualization and SIGGRAPH, his professional activities also include being Co-chair of IEEE Visualization 2000 and IEEE Visualization 2001 as well as a founding co-chair of IEEE Symposium on Parallel Visualization and Graphics, and is currently a Short Papers Co-Chair for Eurographics 2006, Vienna Austria.


Prof Stuart Sumida

California State University, San Bernandino

Nadia Magnenat-Thalmann


"Anatomy, Animation, Science, and Special Effects - Biology meets Computer Graphics"


The future of biomedical imaging, the power to influence with story-telling, the synthesis of art and science – they can all find seeds in animation.

Professor Stuart Sumida has consulted on animated characters and digital effects for over thirty length feature films for such groups as Walt Disney Feature Animation, DreamWorks and Pacific Data Images, Warner Brothers, Rhythm and Hues, SONY Pictures ImageWorks, Walt Disney Imagineering, and others.  Based on these experiences, and his work as an animal and human anatomist, he will discuss the relationships between the science of anatomical structure and the art and science of animation as they relate to computer graphics.

Standard features of animal anatomy and feeding will be presented in regards to how they impact on body design. In turn, this will focus on how such information is important to artists, designers, and riggers for the processes of both traditional and computer generated animation. Human design and function will also be reviewed with an eye toward features characterizing adults versus children (the "cutification factors") and female-male dimorphism. For both animals and humans, locomotion and movement in general will be emphasized.



Biographical Sketch

Professor Stuart Sumida received his Ph.D from UCLA in 1987, and taught in the Department of Anatomy and the Pritzker School of Medicine at the University of Chicago from 1988-1992, and moved to California State University San Bernardino in 1992. He is the author of three books and approximately 60 publications on the anatomy of living and extinct amphibians and reptiles - animals that predating the earliest dinosaurs by 50-80 million years. But, he works on dinosaurs as well, investigating their locomotion and relationships to birds.

His palaeontological research has taken him throughout North America and Europe with the support of many museums, the National Geographic Society and NATO. Stuart's teaching focus is primarily on comparative vertebrate anatomy and human anatomy. As an anatomical consultant, his work in the animation and special effects industries began with Beauty and the Beast and Lion King, and has included Mulan, George of the Jungle, the live action versions of 101 and 102 Dalmatians, Tarzan, Stuart Little, Dinosaur, Cats and Dogs, Harry Potter, Lilo and Stitch, Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron, Scooby Doo, Stuart Little II, Reign of Fire, Brother Bear, and Shrek II. He is currently involved in ongoing projects with DreamWorks Feature Animation, SONY, and Rhythm and Hues. His recent work with Rhythm and Hues Studios includes: Scooby Doo II, Garfield, Chronicles of Riddick, and Around the World in 80 Days.

Stuart has one son, Darwin, who is three years old and acts a lot like Stitch. When Darwin lets him, Stuart teaches aikido and pursues his other interests in the martial arts.