The SIGGRAPH Professional Chapters sure know how to ring in a new millennium! A glimpse at a few of the activities sponsored by some of our chapters offers a snapshot of computer graphics around the world at the dawn of this new era.
Diverse as the chapters and membership may be in other ways, the common interest in computer graphics unites us to share knowledge for the intellectual and professional development of our membership and other interested persons. Chapters activities typically vary to include site visits to studios, production houses and other businesses and institutions; screenings and exhibits of members and others’ work; and meetings where presentations of papers, panels, new software and techniques, or behind-the-scenes how-we-did-it talks are made. What follows is a sampling of international chapters activities during the first quarter of the year 2000.
The Toronto chapter organized a site visit to CyberStage, a Toronto-based communications strategy company working primarily in the new media and arts sectors, where CyberStage Communications Director Mark Jones presented a talk on computer graphics in editorial development. Mark provided insight to one aspect of how computer graphics is changing our world. He focused on how more and more of our language is being mediated through the use of visual media, the possibilities this holds for the development of editorial for books and magazines and what cognitive and cultural aspects need to be taken into consideration when investigating this approach.
Also organized was a visit to Chromacide, an animation/music company that services the television, effects, gaming and Internet industries with computer-generated effects, character animation and musical composition. The company also is involved with live production of interactive visuals for current techno DJs and producers. At this meeting, Geoff Marshall and Dave Howard spoke on animation and music and discussed their technique called synchromation, which is the process of generating computer graphics in sync with an audio source in real-time.
Finally, the chapter held a screening of members’ work where all types of work and both student and professional reels were welcome.
Screenings of The Story of Computer Graphics and a video review titled Web3D RoundUp were held.
The annual general meeting was held. In addition to the business meeting, the prize for the chapter’s logo competition was presented and a complimentary buffet lunch was offered. Other meetings this quarter included a technical presentation and screening of members’ R&D work.
The SIGGRAPH Singapore Chapter is devoting considerable time to organizing ComGraph 2000: Asia Pacific Computer Animation Contest to showcase the best of computer graphics and animation creations in the Asia Pacific region at the Broadcast Asia2000 exhibition and conference. The competition has two categories, open and student, for anyone from countries in the Asia Pacific region, including Australia and New Zealand. Submissions may include commercial productions, advertisements, experimental sequences showing special effects, animated cartoons or just about any animation clip that tells a story, exhibits special computer graphics or animation techniques or is simply interesting and fun.
There is substantial incentive to enter this competition, considering the exposure and prizes. In the open category, the first prize is an all-expenses paid trip to SIGGRAPH 2000 from the winner’s home country; second prize is US$2,000; third prize is US$1,000. In the student category, the first prize is US$1,000; second prize is US$500; third prize is US$250. Each of prizes will be accompanied by a specially designed trophy. In addition, there will be special awards including the Innovative Java Prize of US$1,000 for work done using Java technology and the IHPC Award of US$250 for the Most Creative Animation Work by a Singaporean student. The judges will be a panel of international experts in computer graphics and animation and submissions will be judged on story component, content, technical and artistic innovation, creativity, originality and design. Naturally, the awards ceremony will be a grand party and celebration!
The Paris chapter hosted a presentation on electric image exemplified by a 3D image of a street at night in the rain.
Activities this quarter revolved around planning for the next meeting, which is more like a mini-conference. The Central Israel SIGGRAPH Professional Chapter holds these meetings three times a year at Tel-Aviv University. A typical meeting consists of six half-hour research presentations with occasional presentations of commercial systems of interest to the computer graphics community.
What is the PCC?
SIGGRAPH Director for Professional Chapters
The PCC is the Professional Chapters Committee and it is chaired by the ACM SIGGRAPH Director for Professional Chapters. This group creates and implements policies which help guide the chapters in making decisions and in planning their event calendars. The PCC also assists the Director in making financial decisions with regard to the Professional Chapters budget that is approved by the ACM SIGGRAPH Executive Committee.
The PCC is composed of chapter leaders selected by the Director. The current members of the PCC are:
- Scott Lang, Director for Professional
Chapters (Chair, NYC ACM SIGGRAPH)
- Colleen Cleary (former Chair, Orlando ACM SIGGRAPH)
- Thierry Frey (Chair, Paris ACM SIGGRAPH)
- Garry Paxinos (former Chair, Fort Lauderdale ACM SIGGRAPH)
- Adele Newton (Chair, Toronto ACM SIGGRAPH)
- Jenny Dana (Chair, Silicon Valley ACM SIGGRAPH)
- Mary Higgins (Chair, Washington DC ACM SIGGRAPH)
- Juan Lopez (Vice-Chair, Mexico City ACM SIGGRAPH)
- Genny Yee (Chair, Los Angeles ACM SIGGRAPH)
For the last four-plus years, the PCC has functioned with a number of subcommittees created around the needs of the chapters. At the PCC meeting in January 2000, these subcommittees were evaluated to determine how well they were actually serving the chapters. After some discussion, we reestablished the following subcommittees:
- Web Site (New)
- Electronic Services (New)
- Database (New)
- Student Chapters (New)
The Publications Subcommittee will continue to be chaired by Colleen Cleary. Their main responsibility is to prepare the Professional Chapters Computer Graphics column for each issue, administer the distribution of Professional Chapters media passes for the annual conference, create and oversee an on-line repository of chapter-produced articles (currently under development), create hand-outs for the Professional Chapters booth and provide the content and FAQ for the Publications Subcommittee Web page.
The Events Subcommittee continues to be headed by Adele Newton, current Chair of the Toronto chapter. This group administers event support funding, follows up approved events with event evaluations, helps to create an event instruction package (like a how-to guide), oversees event reporting/tracking (as soon as our electronic tracking system is implemented on-line), works with chapter resource contacts to track chapter activity, assists with chapter entries to the SIGGRAPH calendar, helps to create a chapter event archive and provides the content and FAQ for the subcommittee Web page.
The Web Site Subcommittee is new and will work closely with the ACM SIGGRAPH Director for Communications and the ACM SIGGRAPH Webmaster to maintain the chapters pages at siggraph.org. Mary Higgins, Chair and founder of the Washington DC chapter, will chair this subcommittee. This group will design and maintain the Professional Chapters website at siggraph.org, create chapter website templates for use by new and restart chapters, serve as a resource for chapter webmasters (a sort of helpdesk) and provide the content and FAQ for the subcommittee Web page.
The Electronic Services Subcommittee is also new. The Web Site and Electronic Services Subcommittees are offshoots of the former Communications Subcommittee. We felt this set up would allow us to work more effectively by breaking the two groups apart and enabling them to narrow their focus on one particular area of electronic communications. Thierry Frey and Garry Paxinos will be co-chairing this subcommittee. Their primary tasks include handling all back-end development (the behind-the-scenes technical work), overseeing all alias creation for the chapters and providing the content and FAQ for the subcommittee Web page.
The Database Subcommittee is new. Jenny Dana, Chair of the Silicon Valley chapter, is the Chair for this group. This subcommittee will create and maintain a database of all chapter and chapter leader contact information (including making chapter officer changes, chapter contact changes and chapter email alias changes), adding Professional and Student Chapter start-up info and providing the content and FAQ for the subcommittee Web page.
The Start-Up Subcommittee will be chaired by Scott Lang with strong participation from Colleen and Thierry. This area is vital to the continued growth of the chapters network so it is important that the incoming Director have a good understanding of what is needed by in-formation and newly chartered chapters. This group’s tasks include assisting new inquiries, tracking new charters, developing and maintaining the ACM SIGGRAPH Chapters start-up kit, running the start-up meetings at the annual conference, giving a status report at the annual Chapters Workshop and providing the content and FAQ for the subcommittee Web page.
The Student Chapters Subcommittee is a new group. We are still determining what the responsibilities of this subcommittee will be.
The remaining members of the PCC are Genny Yee and Juan Lopez. Genny is one of our booth co-managers for SIGGRAPH 2000 and will be helping with the other Professional Chapter conference activities as well. Juan will be translating our website to Spanish as well as working with any subcommittee that needs his help - an "at-large" position if you will.
Each member of the PCC has also been assigned a number of chapters for whom they will act as the chapter resource contact. Basically, this will allow the Director for Professional Chapters to be in touch with all the chapters on a regular basis via the members of the PCC. This delegation will allow the Director more time to deal with those issues that demand his/her attention while providing each chapter with someone who can get back to them quickly with answers to their questions or the contact info for the person that can help them. This will also help us in evaluating the health of our chapters by providing us with activity, volunteer and financial data more regularly during the course of the year.
I hope that this helps to give you a better understanding of the structure and purpose of the Professional Chapters Committee. Please let me know if you have any questions, comments or suggestions. You can send me email at email@example.com.
Colleen Cleary has been Computer Graphics Professional Chapters Editor for four years. She manages technical projects for the Orange County Sheriff’s Office. She has chaired and co-chaired the Orlando chapter and served on the ACM SIGGRAPH Professional Chapters Committee. Colleen welcomes contributions from chapter members worldwide for publication in Computer Graphics.
Scott Lang is a member of the SIGGRAPH Executive Committee as the SIGGRAPH Director for Professional Chapters. He works as a computer specialist at the Bergen Academies, a group of public, specialized high schools located in Bergen County, NJ. Scott teaches video production, website development and animation to students specializing in business, engineering, medical and science technologies. He is the chair of the NYC ACM SIGGRAPH Professional Chapter and a member of the ACM Membership Activities Board.