View Full Version : What about a challenge for the programmers?

09 September 2005, 03:45 PM
What do you guys think about a challenge for the programmers? I know that CGSociety is made up of mostly modelers and animators, but there are a few of us programmers that hang around the forum. Some examples are cloud simulation, collision detection, AI animation, etc.

What do you think? Hey Programming and Development moderators? Can we start one? :shrug:

09 September 2005, 08:17 AM
Think this is a great idea.

What about simple challenges to begin with with all code posted and opensourced so that we can all learn and use the winner in our own efforts.

Some problems I'm working on include simple tesselation of contour data, want to implement manipulators in opengl, simple opnegl picking implementation, fast hover select in opengl....

Could be very productive if all entrants can get something from it?

Really like this idea.

Any support?


09 September 2005, 10:30 PM
What about simple challenges to begin with with all code posted and opensourced so that we can all learn and use the winner in our own efforts.

Good idea! I'm hoping to get a response from one of the moderators.

Could be very productive if all entrants can get something from it?

I agree totally! :)

09 September 2005, 04:54 AM
I would love to join one. I don't think there would be a huge participant level so I guess the challenges would have to be unofficial, like the unofficial challenges in the game wip section or so. I guess you can start a small challenge on your own without the help of the mods; cgtalk user erilaz organized maxscript challenges. I know that RobertoOrtiz proposed it, but not sure how that turned out.

Anything you had in mind for the first challenge? You can probably do a test run to see how it all works out.

09 September 2005, 08:15 AM
great idea jeffrey! i also love the idea of having everything opensource, should be fun for programmers and learning for the beginners.count me in, when you're doing a simple test run!

09 September 2005, 02:05 PM
I wouldn't mind at all if a group of us started an unofficial graphics programming challenge. What do you guys think we could use as an incentive for people to participate?

09 September 2005, 03:34 PM
Best Incentive I think is find a common problem and try and solve it.

I posted a few I've got. Any other ideas?


09 September 2005, 05:25 PM
Roberto Ortiz floated this question a few months ago:

I'm glad it's come up again. Previously there were issues about platform, application, scope....Roberto, are you still interested in setting up a challenge?

09 September 2005, 08:59 PM
After reading the posts at Robertos topic see there are a few pitfalls...

Think its best to steer clear off app specific. Like the idea of sticking to OpenGL. Everyone can code for this. What about c++ and OpenGL.

Assuming rendering context has been set up generic classes that can be added to an application that add functionality to a users application eg...

- Universal Manipulator
- Model Loaders
- SubD Implementation
- Object Selection and highlighting.

There are lots of subjects that learners and more experienced coders can get their teeth into (I place my self somewhere between the two!!).

This would offer a level playing field that all can draw and learn from.

Any thoughts? jfelrod1960?


09 September 2005, 05:31 AM
To make it more managable, why not start smaller. Something on the order of who can create the fastest zbuffer sort given a specific scene structure. Or who can make the most elegant noise function?

09 September 2005, 07:15 PM
Running a specific challenge based on a standard - eg. OpenGL, RenderMan or Mental Ray - or even a Maya API or Perl/Python challenge. The LGPL idea on the other thread sounds a good idea - or just let the entrant choose the license they want (along with any versioning system if it's a team project).

It is nice - and important - to have a good interface to your animation program etc - but that opens up so many cans of worms.


09 September 2005, 09:59 AM
Gone quite...bump...

Anyone want to try this?


09 September 2005, 06:55 PM
I'd definitly be up for that. but I don't likie the idea of limiting the challenges to one API such as openGL. more of a DX person myself for example, and I would find it painful to go back to OpenGL.

That said I really like the idea of giving the programming aspect of graphics a place here.

09 September 2005, 07:28 PM
Even though I only use OGL and c++, I still wouldnt like to limit the challenges to those two either. With most challenges here you're given a theme/topic and you can use almost whatever tools you want to accomplish the challenge, as long as you follow the theme/topic.

I guess now we just need topic ideas (something small maybe) so we can test this out, anyone who wants to join will join. So anyone have any idea what the first topic should be?

09 September 2005, 02:51 PM
The biggest problem with having a programming challenge is to find an area that can be further explored and make sure to prevent cheating. Unlike art, real time programming algrithms and strategies has been around computers for long and internet is full of that. Also, unlike art, programming challenges cannot be a success, unless we can make it an art.

Some topic suggestions would be

Related to Art:
Create specific MentalRay/Renderman Shaders -> Display the output and code-explanation
Create Plugin to add a specefic functionality to a particular package.

Non-Art related:
I would prefer a Group project for these as these topics has to be a little big to make it any fun. Model Editor or a special Export format to trasfer data between packages. If you are a fulltime worker like me, then this area is very hard to tackle after 10:00 pm

09 September 2005, 03:12 PM
It seems like The CGSociety is planning on such a challenge. So I'm going to wait to see what comes of it.

If nothing comes of it, then we individuals who posted here can decide together what kind of unofficial challenge to do. Are you guys game?

09 September 2005, 10:40 PM
i'd like to try too!

some of those shaders are also easy to come by these days, what isn't? people are so smart everywhere.

It should definitely be connected to art or something to enhance art or animation. this is cg talk after all. ::)

Hey I like the group idea.

01 January 2006, 09:17 PM
Is there still some interest in a challenge like this? I have an idea that may be of some interest.

02 February 2006, 01:15 AM
Yeah i'd be up for it!
Be a good chance to see whether people can put their code where their mouths are so to speak!!!


02 February 2006, 06:08 AM
As a programmer myself I think this is a great idea. :applause:
However, many of the ideas seem to be restricted to specific APIs. No way!
I think it should be something very vague, fairly simple and completely non API/platform specific.
Something like "fur" or "fluid" and they could program whatever they want in whatever language, realtime or not.
The link was talking about a Spherical Harmionic mental ray shader competition. Sorry I will have to sit that one out, way too specific for me. I could do SH in c++ with cg shaders, but I know sod all about mental ray and can't be arsed to learn. :-(

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