Computer Vision and Graphics

Welcome to COSC450, Semester 1, 2017


Course Outline

This course examines a range of topics in the related fields of image processing, computer vision, and computer graphics. These three fields all relate to images, and the processing and construction of images in computer programs. One way to think about the difference between the fields is in terms of input and output:

  • Image processing takes images as input, and produces images as output.
  • Computer vision takes images as input, and produces abstract models as output.
  • Computer graphics takes an abstract model as input and produces images as output.

However, the lines between these areas are blurry at best, and many techniques are common between them.

The topics for each year may change, depending on class interests, but for 2017 are expected to be:

  • Animation principles
  • Stereo vision
  • Augmented reality technologies
  • Procedural city generation
  • Image morphing or Deep Convolutional Neural Networks (to be confirmed)

This paper aims to give students an overview of some of the key areas of research in computer graphics and vision; an understanding of key techniques in the field; and practical experience with some widely used tools in these fields.

Assessment Overview

COSC450 has 40% internal assessment, with the remaining 60% from a final examination. Each of the five topics covered in each year will contribute 20% of your final grade. Two will be assessed by assignments, which will be largely programming based, and the remaining three will be assessed in the examination.

More details can be found on the Assessment pages, and full details of the assignments will be available shortly.


As a 20 point paper, the nominal workload for COSC450 is 200 hours in total, or about 5 weeks of full time work. Only 24 hours of formal classes are scheduled. The remaining time is expected to be a mix of reading, exerciese, working on assignments, and independent study.

The assignments are each worth 20% of your final grade, and so can be expected to take around 40 hours each. This includes learning about the technolgies used as well as programming, evaluation, and report writing.

Some readings will be suggested for each lecture, and you should view these as entries into the literature. You are encouraged to read around the topic, using the provided readings as a starting point.

Most lectures will conclude some exercises to be completed before the next class. The following lecture will begin with a recap of the exercises, and you will be expected to complete the exercises so that you can contribute to the discussion.

Recommended Preparation

Students enrolling in COSC450 would normally be undertaking a 400-level programme in Computer Science, having completed an undergraduate degree in Computer Science or a related discipline. COSC342 (Computer Graphics) provides very useful background, but is not strictly necessary. If you have not taken COSC342 or the equivalent, you may wish to follow along with that material to support your studies in COSC450. Students should have strong programming skills, and be comfortable with mathematics, particularly linear algebra. The mathematics required for COSC450 is not particularly advanced, but it is pervasive.