The 2009 Lloyd Fosdick Award, intended to recognize exemplary
collaborative projects that include Computer Science undergraduates as
participants, was recently announced. This year's winning project was
SketchCraft: A Sketch-Based, Physics-Enabled Video Game.
Project team members were undergraduate Computer Science majors
Marek Sotola and
Janusz (Jani) Strzepek.
Kerpoof is a Boulder-based company which hosts an educational and
entertaining web site, kerpoof.com
for children. The motivation behind Kerpoof's products is to create a fun,
interactive environment aimed at instilling interest in creativity and
discovery in their young audience. Kerpoof's previous Senior project,
the highly acclaimed
(later renamed Super Doodle) project,
incorporates a shape recognition system that allows users to create
elaborate and precise drawings. The goal of SketchCraft was to
incorporate the existing Super Doodle engine into a drawing-based
game that is fun, educational and creative.
The World of SketchCraft is an online, sketch-based video game.
The project was written in
using the Flex 3 Software Development Kit.
Users sketch various objects to complete the tasks set before them. Using
the Super Doodle engine, user-drawn shapes are corrected: based on
the overall shape of the object that the user drew, the game actually
adjusts the shape to have straight lines, rounded curves, and square
corners. Once the shape has been corrected, the shape enters the physics
world. Based on the material that the user used to draw, the shape is
assigned a set of physics properties. Example properties include the
shape's friction coefficient, mass, and coefficient of restitution. In
combination with the object's initial position and shape, these properties
govern the object's behavior in the physics world. For example, a rubber
object bounces when it comes in contact with another shape, while an ice
The variety of possible drawing materials adds another degree of complexity
to the game. Using various shapes and materials, the user must intelligently
develop a method of "beating" each level. Level goals range from building a
tower to catapulting objects into the "win" area. This combination of
drawing and physics based game play make SketchCraft unique.
In addition to this basic game play, SketchCraft also provides a
level editor and a framework for further extending the game's capabilities.
Ultimately, users will be able to construct and share new levels with each
other and developers will be able to use the framework to extend the game in
The project also won a
"Best of Section Award"
at the Spring 2009 Engineering Design Expo.
SketchCraft was one of ten projects completed in Computer Science
Senior Projects (CSCI 4308-CSCI 4318)
during the 2008-2009 academic year. The Senior Projects course was taught
by Bruce Sanders along with teaching
assistants Guy Cobb and
wishes to congratulate the winners, as well as three other excellent teams
that were also nominated for the award:
LaspView -- 3D Simulation for Satellite Flight Control
Alexander (Alex) Woods
[nominated by Bruce Sanders]
Evolution of Journalism
[nominated by Qin (Christine) Lv]
Apigy -- A Real-Time E-Commerce Infrastructure for Small Retail Shops
[nominated by Dirk Grunwald]
This annual award is named for former Department Chair
Lloyd Fosdick. Nominations for the award come
from Computer Science faculty directing group projects, with the
selecting the award-winning project from those nominated each year. Each
undergraduate student in the award-winning group will receive a $50 prize.