Here we are at the Oceans Fair.
Jeff Leitz showing people the online exhibit.
Who are we?
Two classes of graduate students learning 3D graphics and analytic simulation at the
Naval Postgraduate School.
Participating individuals and their contributions are listed on the
We are modeling the three-dimensional (3D) shape, structure, imagery and
motion behaviors of plants and animals in the
kelp forest exhibit
Monterey Bay Aquarium.
Who is our intended audience?
- Scientific users interested in composing models in a 3D Web environment
- Educators and students of all ages
- General public
What does success look like?
- We are modeling tank dimensions, water flow, fish rendering and
creature behavior with high fidelity.
- We are creating an exemplar site that demonstrates how to compose
and render multiple dissimilar models using 3D graphics on the World Wide Web.
- Visit the
Monterey Bay Aquarium
to see the real
kelp forest exhibit.
It is astonishing.
- Another interesting link is the Monterey Bay Aquarium's
Who is doing the work?
- Graduate students (who else!) at the
Naval Postgraduate School during the
spring quarter April-June 1998.
- The first class of eight students
UW3303 Modeling and Simulation
examined a wide range of analytic simulation techniques.
We modeled physics of the tank (water flow, hydrodynamics response) and
basic biological motion behaviors (swimming, flocking, crawling).
- The second class of seven students
CS4470 3D Image Synthesis
"drew" and rendered all of the geometric structure and imagery, using the
Virtual Reality Modeling Language (VRML).
Using VRML means this 3D site is viewable using standard Web browsers
such as Netscape and Internet Explorer.
- Don Brutzman
is the instructor for both courses. Additional projects are considered
each time the course is taught.
What is the motivation for this project?
- By focusing on thoroughly modeling a controlled environment, we hope to
produce an exemplar site for modeling larger and more sophisticated
- We can't reproduce the many glories of nature, but we can model and
render reasonable facsimiles which demonstrate current state of the art.
Who has seen this work?
Public demonstration of this project was at the Oceans Fair:
- Friday June 12 1998
- Ocean Fair Technology Pavilion
- Custom House Plaza in downtown Monterey, along with 60 other booths
- About 1000 people stopped by to see it, and 500 (mostly young people) sat down to try it
- Most frequent comment (even from kids): "cool!"
The Oceans Fair was part of the
National Ocean Conference
held in Monterey June 11-12 1998.
another National Ocean Conference link
Year of the Ocean
We demonstrated this small virtual world at the
conference in Orlando Florida July 19-24 as part of the
Web 3D Roundup.
Gee, it would be nice to include a networked scuba diver feeding the fish,
using technology from
Web3D Consortium Working Groups.
For example, it might be great to integrate
Human Animation (H-ANIM) avatars with
multicast networking. Or something else. Adding more fish is always a good idea.
Stay tuned, we'll see.
Who else helped?
We gratefully acknowledge the many people who helped us on this project. Thank you!
- Monterey Bay Aquarium (MBA):
Fran Wolfe, Bruce Gritton, Chris Harrold, Steve Webster and Ginger Hopkins
- Moss Landing Marine Labs (MLML): Ray McClain (class participant) and Rick Starr
- Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI): Mike McCann
- Fleet Numerical and Oceanographic Center (FNOC): Joe Cannon (class participant)
- Naval Postgraduate School (NPS):
Stewart Liles, John Sanders, Don McGregor, John Locke, Jimmie Liberato, Howard Abrams and Mike Zyda
We gratefully acknowledge permission from the following photographers who helped
contribute to the images archived on the
page. Individual credits are provided next to the photos.
Letters of permission appear in the hypermail archive.
Please acknowledge these fine individuals if you use their images.
All other images were collected as part of the kelp forest project.
- UCSB Marine Science Institute: Milton Love
- UCSC Department of Biology: Steve Lonhart
- Jody L. Haynes
- Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife: Bill Barss
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The Uniform Resource Locator (URL) for this home page is
(30 September 99)
(official NPS disclaimer)