Undergrad Innovation

This week I was asked a question when coming up with elements for a project proposal for 3D Atlanta along with Krisna, Alex, Robert, and Dylan: “What has the 3D Atlanta project done for your undergraduate experience?” And while I tried to keep it short (not really) for the proposal, I realized just what this question was asking me.

You see, I tend to think of my progress in certain year frames. In 11th grade, I started learning Photoshop and basic design principles of drawing and illustrating. By 12th grade, I had a good knowledge of html. By last year, I had good knowledge of css and started working on Javascript stuff, as well as had a great knowledge of Python through my 2310 class. And now this year is all about execution and applying what I know, especially within 3D modal contexts for the 3D Atlanta project.

I find myself looking back and realizing how fast and far everything went. It seems like an exponential curve of innovation. I went from making boxes move on a screen to dealing with dynamic layers of interactive material. And now, thanks to 3D Atlanta and my math classes, I’m starting to look into stuff I thought I wouldn’t touch until the end of days as a college student. Things like projection matrices, raytracing, and other 3D concepts. I find myself reading papers from Disney research in zurich about complicated algorithms and equations that I can start to understand now. For pete’s sake, I’ve started reading and trying to understand Einstein’s field theory equations! It’s so mind boggling!

I’ll have to admit though, this process of learning does change some things. Practice becomes a lot harder due to the time it takes and the learning curves become steeper. This isn’t about drawing lines on a page to make squares anymore. One of the fundamental changes include what exactly I want to do now concerning my major. I’m definitely staying with Computer Science, and while I can do and learn how to do any programming, I would like to focus more on experimental computer science kind of like what the people at Disney Research do, but also study animation since I love the world of animating so much. But programming Maya scripts vs Graphics programming is a pretty big step in between, and I’d be stuck in the middle. If there’s something like becoming a computer science/animator thing, please let me know.

But I have no doubts that the SIF program has enabled me to do everything I dreamed of doing. Now I can start acting on the ideas that have been stuck in my head all these years. And I have you, fellow SIFers, to thank for that.

Thank You.

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