Submitted by , posted on 03 May 2001

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Material Point Method (MPM) is a mathematical method used to describe the interaction of colliding objects. We were challenged with a project to create courseware to teach MPM. In order to best explain this method to students, simulation software was created. One of the main goals of our software was to have (semi)real-time representations of the simulation. Because of the medium (the internet) we were restricted by bandwidth and technology.

Different pieces of this courseware made use of different technologies:
  • Interface [html, css, layers, javascript] - Users are capable of entering parameters for up to five object, as well as general parameters. "Tabs" (implemented in layers) allow the user to jump between separate parameter "pages".
  • Graphs - using Perl and the GD package we were able to dynamically create graphs based on the energy levels during the simulation. Although not amazing eye-candy, these do provide insight into the simulation.
  • Movies - basic OpenGL function calls within a C program were used to create the individual frames for the movie, which were then encoded with an mpeg encoder.
  • Check it out, have some fun, and if you feel like helping us out, fill out the survey.


    -The MPM Team

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