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CS Students Showcase Their Work at Engineering Open House

4/29/2009 6:21:00 AM

Computer science students at the University of Illinois will be showcasing their work at the 2009 Engineering Open House. More than 23 teams of students will demonstrate their work on projects ranging from green computing to swarming cars, and from video games and computer animation to iPhone apps and distributed music players. In addition, computer science students will showcase their entrepreneurial start-up efforts.

The event will be held Friday, March 13 and Saturday, March 14 in the Siebel Center for Computer Science.


In Darkness
Navigate the gathering blackness using all your senses and fight back against the undead menace in this 3D game! Gamebuilders and SIGGRAPH jointly present a new way to visualize three-dimensional games in this unique project.

Overly Professional
Impasto the briefcase salesman is on a mission. Are you a good enough salesman to rescue the president? Featuring a unique whiteboard-based style and excessive explosions.

RTS Racer
Race through an open world environment running over your enemies with a convoy of vehicles at your side.

You and up to three friends try to fend off hordes of enemies to save the galaxy. Player-cooperation is required to survive.

Linux Users Group: LUG to the rescue
LUG demonstrates their pre-configured Linux environment intended for system repair and recovery. It is designed to be booted either from across a network or from removable media.

Macwarriors: MyCampus
Navigating a campus can be a tricky thing, especially if it is new. How do I get to this building? What restaurants are open at 2:30 in the morning? What bus do I take to get to my class on time? What's going on this afternoon? Who do I call if I need a ride?

These are the questions most often asked on campuses today. The iPhone platform is quickly becoming a more widely used and exciting platform. More than ever, college students carry with them an iPhone or an iPod Touch. MacWarriors, a special interest group in ACM, has built an application for these devices that answers the questions posed earlier. Get maps; retrieve information about food, events, and transportation; or look up your friends in the campus directory, all from your phone or music player.

MyCampus is an application built not only for UIUC, but for any campus. It provides a framework for expansion that campuses across the country or globe can tap into. MyCampus is designed so that you can better understand the campus you spend your time on, and so provides you information from the most convenient source: your pocket.

SIGArch: Multitouch Screen
SIGArch is implementing a capacitive multi-touch surface. It detects more than one touch by detecting changes in capacitance on a wire grid.

Make a new friend! Our instant messaging chat bot wants to meet you. Its amusing demeanor will surely put a smile on your face, and you'll see it learning and improving its vocabulary as you converse with it. Who knew that testing the limits of modern natural language processing could be so much fun?

SIGBio: Eyetracking Whack-a-mole
We have created a game system that uses an eye-tracking camera and surface EMG instead of a typical controller. We applied this to the classic game Whack-A-Mole, using the eye-tracking to specify the target and muscle contraction to dictate the hit.

SIGBot: The Mechanical Eye
Now Showing! "The Mechanical Eye" -- the camera that watches you while you move! Using two cameras, it processes video input to differentiate objects from their background and follows them. It also uses depth perception to generate 3D video, so you can watch the cameras watch you IN 3D! (just in case).

Swarming Cars
Come see our swarm of four independently thinking cars! As a mass they can follow a moving target, very similar to a school of fish or a swarm of hornets. Watch as they act in concert although they are programmed to act on their own!

SIGDave: Hovercraft
What is an air-cushion-vehicle? How does it work? How much weight does it hold? How do you steer? These are all questions we're answering with the construction of our very own hovercraft.

Lego Logic Gates
Lego logic gates are an entertaining and educational way to recreate our most basic digital building blocks. AND, NOT, OR, XOR, NOR, and NAND all combine to form a half-adder, a full-adder, and potentially a full blown ALU (Arithmetic Logic Unit).

SIGGRAPH :Projection onto non-uniform surfaces
What does it look like for an object to come to life? Spatially augmented reality uses projectors to transform everyday objects into virtual experiences. Its the closest thing to magic you'll see all day.

This 3D-animated short film follows our characters through the Solar System in a showcase of modern animation and other computer graphics techniques. The project sums up 7 months of effort from a mixed group of programmers, artists, and musicians in a collaboration characteristic of the film industry. Whether you are interested in film-making technology or a good story, you won't want to miss "Moonbean."

SIGMil: Unfriendly
Your privacy settings online do not protect you. Unfriendly demonstrates the pervasiveness of information on the Internet.

SIGNet: Greening the Desktop
Thin clients are small, efficient devices that provide a centrally managed system to meet the computing needs of the average person. We will have a few thin clients on display to show everyone the potential benefits of using these devices in place of power-hungry desktop computers.

SIGOps: Communications/Protocol Framework
Today, most protocol implementations are written from scratch for specific purposes, or an overly general approach is taken by using XML and other serialization techniques. The first approach is efficient in terms of performance but requires starting from scratch every time a protocol is needed. The second approach allows for easier code generation but, the protocol tends to be verbose in many cases. Our protocol framework captures the essence of what is needed to define a protocol, and allows for easy code generation for protocol and message validation.


Crescendo is a distributed democratic music library and player. It allows many people to share music and vote for what they'd like to hear. Crescendo is distributed, so it's possible to use more than one database of music and/or more than one player. This allows us, for example, to set up two music queues in two different rooms, both pulling music from the same database. Alternatively, you can set up your own database and plug it into a public player so that others can enjoy your music collection.

Bookworm is a searchable index of ACM's library. A clean interface provides a simple way of finding your favorite math, science, or programming book in ACM's extensive collection.

SIGWin: Newslight
Many students dislike the inability to check newsgroups from any computer. NewsLight is an in-browser newgroup reader, made using Microsoft's new SilverLight, allowing anyone from any computer to check newsgroups whenever they want.

!BANG: !Multiplicity
We are demonstrating a network protocol and client which work together to distribute processing-intensive problems among multiple computers, speeding up the process considerably. Our implementation gives the ad-hoc flexibility and range that most common clusters lack.

Illini Entrepeneurship Network: IEN Startups
The Illini Entrepreneurship Network (IEN) aims to foster entrepreneurship in students at the University of Illinois through presentations, workshops, competitions, and entrepreneurial ventures. With the addition of the Student Startup Incubator, IEN helps students with an entrepreneurial idea make that idea come to life. We are showcasing some of the student startups of our members.

Graffiti turns everything in your physical world into a virtual graffiti wall that you can write comments on. Similar to how you already write comments on your friends' Facebook walls, imagine if the Starbucks on Green Street had a wall that you could write comments on. Taking advantage of your cell phone's GPS capabilities, you can create a new wall, or write on existing walls around you. Each wall represents a physical building near you. Some students might be complaining about how expensive textbooks are while in a lecture hall, others may simply be demanding that you order the best sandwich in existence: The Wreck at Potbelly on Green Street.

Radio OneLlama
There are countless online radio stations scattered across the web, covering topics ranging from sports and talk radio to eclectic folk music, and everything in between. Because of the dizzying amount of choices, it can be difficult to sift through each station to find one that fits your musical personality the best - you might know it's out there, but you don't know how to find it. An Illinois-based startup OneLlama, has aggregated many of these stations into a single hub called Radio OneLlama, allowing users to quickly identify the stations that best fit their tastes.

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