CS 767/867 Assignment 2: Due Feb 26, 2015 (worth 12%)

Animated Particles vs Arrows?

Usually animation is only used for time varying phenomena. For example wind patterns changing over time, or the movement of some set of objects through the environment. But it seems likely that animation may improve the display of even non changing phenomena, such as wind patterns at a particular instant in time. This assignment is intended to test that proposition. In this assignment you will design and implement an experiment to address this issue. You will implement a routine to generate an artificial vector field with bands of movement which can be directed to the right or left. On some trials there will be more left trending bands. On other trials there will be more right tracing bands. You will compare your own symbol design to arrows and animated particles.

In the experiment the study participant(s) will press different keys depending on whether the majority of movement is to the left or to the right. They will respond as quickly and accurately as possible.

Hypothesis: Animated particles will lead to more accurate responses than arrows.

Conditions: Animated paricles, arrow grid, symbols of your own design.


Your report will have the form of a standard scientific report of an experiment. It will have the following sections and amount to < 1200 wds.
Introduction: The introduction should give a brief intro to the problem citing at least one relevant research paper. You should introduce the animation coding scheme here.
Method: This should describe the critical aspects of the experiment (Details to be given in the class)
Results: Give at a minimum mean absolute errors and the error variance for each condition - an Excel spread sheet is a good way to do the analysis.
Discussion: You should discuss the significance of the results and perhaps suggest improvements to your study.


Ware, C., Kelley, J.G.W. and Pilar, D. Improving the display of wind patterns and Ocean Currents. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, October, 2014, 1573-1581.