Animation Programming

I get a lot of questions about this project. On this page, I will only talk about the project itself and not the diversity-driven, social obligations for why I wanted to be a part of this project. If you are interested in the big WHY behind this amazing project, please visit here.

This project involved a class full of computer science students, most who had never programmed before college. Unlike what you make think, I was not directly working on a project but instead working with the chair of the Computer Science Department, Dr. Mehdi Zargham, to teach the experience of programming to these students. In order to do this, we decided to have the class be centered around a project involving animation. The only problem was, no one in the department knew anything about animation.

Preparing For the Class

The summer before we hosted this class, I spent most of my time learning about animation and how it could be programmed. It turns out that Autodesk has a software called Maya which is a popular animation tool that has a free, 3 year student trial. The cool thing about Maya is that every tool, every action you can make, can be controlled using Maya’s scripting language, MEL, or python. So I learned how to use this scripting feature to create some pretty cool animations and then I taught it to a class full of freshmen. After demonstrations during class and hosting multiple weekly sessions outside of class, here is what a group of students, who had never programmed before college, were able to do using Maya, programming, and their own imaginations.

Results

Several Videos coming soon!

Please note, these videos may contain music and characters that are owned by other entities. Please remember that everything you see here was for educational purposes and contributed to teaching students about programming and what it can do.