CSCI 1951T:

Surveying VR Data Visualization

Tools for Research: Hacking the YURT

Spring 2020

Welcome to CS 1951t!

First class starts 01/23/20!

Classes are Tuesdays and Thursdays 10:30 - 11:50 in CIT 101

Professor: David Laidlaw (

TAs: Ross Briden (, Giuse Nguyen (, Emilia Ruzicka (,

We will be exploring, testing, and evaluating virtual reality software that supports data visualization for researchers and scientists. Moreover, we will investigate how this software can be ported to Brown's YURT. To guide this exploration process, students will select a research project to pursue from a list of collaborators and visualize their collaborator's data using a variety of software. The goal of the wiki is to give future VR research developers a way to easily navigate the field, and to identify shortcomings that need to be fixed as the field continues to grow. Furthermore, we hope that this year's research will expand the list of software by the YURT as well as illustrate its importance as a tool for scientific research.

Course communications will be through the following slack channel:


While there are no strict prerequisites, programming experience will be useful, especially when following and creating tutorials later in the class. In particular, CS 320 and CS 330 will be particularly useful in this course; knowledge of computer graphics is also recommended, however, not required.


Course Information


    • Templates for creating software evaluations, tutorials, and parent pages

Course Policies

Diversity & Inclusion

Our aim is to provide a welcoming environment to all students who take the class. Our TAs have been trained in diversity and inclusion, and all members of the CS community, including faculty and staff, are expected to treat one another in a professional manner. If you feel you have not been treated in a professional manner by any of the course staff, please contact either the instructor, Ugur Cetintemel (Dept. Chair), Tom Doeppner (Vice Chair) or Laura Dobler (diversity & inclusion staff member). We will take all complaints about unprofessional behavior seriously. To access student support services and resources, and to learn more about diversity and inclusion in CS, please visit this webpage.

Completing Hours

While there is no strict deadlines for logging hours , the goal is to have 140 hours by the end of the semester, with 10 hours each week as a recommended guideline so that you don't end up getting overwhelmed by an obscene number of hours packed in at the end of the semester.

Laptop Accessibility

We understand that not all students in our class may have access to laptops to complete assignments. In the case that you need a computer, please visit the IT service center on the 5th floor of Page-Robinson Hall (formerly JWW). Loaner laptops are completely free and will allow you to get access to all the programs needed for class. They let you download and use it like your laptop, and the machines are reset after you use them.