First uploaded to June 3, 1999
Uploaded to   May, 2011


From an Introductory Java Class Given at the Northern Virginia Community College, Loudon Campus in the Spring Semester of 1999.

A number of students took the class with Jan Aminoff as the instructor. The class met for four hours Saturday mornings for fourteen sessions which included a midterm test and a final. The emphasis in this class was on the platform independent graphics capabilities of Java and as an independent project the students were encouraged to create their own Rart™ universes. While all students had had some programming experience, all of them were also exposed to Java for the first time. It should be stated that this was a first effort for the instructor as well as the students and that only about one third of the initial students remained to take the final exam and to submit their own universes. It shall also be said that those who persevered and completed the class have created visually interesting and original works far beyond what could be expected in a Java course with no preselection of graphically inclined or gifted students.

As is explained elsewhere (See for example the Rart™ Home page), a Rart™ universe can be executed as an Application allowing the modification of parameters and the save/print of views. However, such display requires access to the full Java execution environment (JDK 1.1.x). Instead we have here selected to use the Applet viewing environment, RR10L, which is intended for the display of a universe on a web page with a limited parameter capability and no print/save option. On the other hand, the universes here presented should be observable also with some fairly old browsers (e.g Netscape Navigator 3.5 and Internet Explorer 4.0) as long as the browsers have been Java enabled. (See the Rart™ Home page which has a lengthy section on the enabling of Java in different browsers).

In the following examples, you may increase the number of objects by a double-click and you may also read the authors presentation of his/her work by a long click (mouse button pressed more than half a second). In this case you may resume observing the universe by simply clicking the close [x] box in the upper right corner of the inside window.

The universes are presented in order according to the pseudo random draw used also to determine the Rartist ordinal.

NOTE: You need to close one universe window before you can view the next! Have Fun!

The SHAPES Universe, Neal Newton

In the Shapes universe Neal has used the object oriented concept of inheritance to derive particular objects, rectangles, ovals etc. from the abstract class Shape where common properties of the objects are defined. This includes the slow changing of colors for the objects, while the changing of the dimensions derive from the somewhat independent movement of the corners of the defining rectangles.

See the SHAPES Universe

The ECLIPSE Universe, Richard Solomon

In the Eclipse Universe, colored circles move slowly to occasionally block each other and a centrally drawn spiffy looking sun. Using the effects of the xor mode of painting the unexpected colors resulting from overlap provide variety and interest. (Mac users See Note)

See the ECLIPSE Universe

The STARS Universe, Sarojini Pandurangan

In the Stars Universe, six pointed stars appear randomly and with random size and color. Note that they do not overlap. Even if it can not be observed here, Sarojini has also introduced a parameter that allows the background color to be changed. As the stars disappear they leave a tiny trace which allow the observer to observe the random placement of the stars over time. (Mac users See Note)

See the STARS Universe

The BEARS Applet, Junlan Zhang

The Bears Applet is not strictly a universe, but the work to transform it to a Rart™ universe would be minor. It illustrates the use of Java for whimsy and fun. It also includes a short but definite sound effect.

See the BEARS Applet

The GRAPES Universe, Frank Huhn

The Grapes universe carries within itself a maximum of surprises. Frank has a number of rarely but randomly activated triggers, each of which cause some drastically new behavior or a new look like a new color or a new size of the neatly tridimensional sphere, the grape, that Frank uses to trace complex geometrical relationships.

See the GRAPES Universe

The CIRCLES Universe, Renu Chaudhry

The Circles universe actually comes in several flavors of which this one may be the most varied. Muted colors interact in xor mode to give unexpected and often delightful patterns. The way the centers of the circles are offset occasionally provides a balloon like structure which must be considered a visual joke. (Mac users See Note)

See the CIRCLES Universe

The BUBBLES Universe, Silvana Mehner

In the Bubbles universe we have an example of interaction between the multicolored shimmering wheels/bubbles visible on the screen. In addition to randomly moving objects there is a specially designed wheel/ flower that ingests other wheels in its way. Wait patiently for the moment when all other objects have been consumed and be rewarded by a swarm of bubbles just as if you had made them from soap water in sunshine.

See the BUBBLES Universe

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