Kelvin Sung, Ph.D.

Current Research Projects and/or Areas of Interest

Serious games is the study of how to design and build applications to take advantage of the engaging nature of videogames to accomplish real world objectives, objectives that are beyond the traditional “for fun” entertainment purpose. Working with the UWB Office of Admissions and the Center for Serious Play, Kelvin and his students have built a series of games to assist potential visitors to tour UWB campus and to assist new students navigate their way on their first day on campus. Current efforts in this area include: the tools required for the automation of building serious games, software development process for designing/building serious games.

Ultra reality is the study of how to reconstruct reality remotely based on samples of the real world. In very limited ways, we can already achieve this goal, e.g., we can view videos from a web-cam and observe reality remotely. The objective of our study is to generalize this paradigm by reconstructing the entire 3D world. For example, imagine a webpage showing you a webcam view of a classroom. Now imagine from home you can manipulate and move the webcam to any new positions around the entire classroom with any new orientations and observing what is happening in the classroom right at that moment, life, in real time. Of course, our study is how to accomplish these manipulations without moving any actual cameras.

Subject or Domain Expertise

Computer graphics, all aspects of synthesizing images, videogame development, serious games, virtual/mix/ultra reality

Programming Languages, Tools, Applications, or Hardware/Software of Interest

Programming languages and applications are tools, they come and they go. I do not know any programming language or application well. I learn the necessary tools when I want to study concepts: learned C++ to study object orientation, was forced to program in Java and C#. I learned VBScript and Java Script to understand office automation, learned PHP to understand server side scripting, etc. In the end, I don’t know any of these languages or scripts well. They are just tools, I learned the concepts.

Currently, I am investigating approaches to unify the programming models for mobile devices, i.e., Apple I-devices, Android-based phones, Windows Phone 7 devices, in terms of programming with the sensors and input mechanisms, the development and deployment processes, and the interface to the internet (e.g., accessing the web services).

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Past/Present Courses Taught at UWB

  • CSS 106: Computer Animation
  • CSS 290: Mobile Computing
  • CSS 305: Interdisciplinary Information Technology
  • CSS 341: Fundamentals of Programming Theory and Applications
  • CSS 385: Introduction to Game Development
  • CSS 430: Operating Systems
  • CSS 443: Advanced Programming Methodologies
  • CSS 450: Introduction to Computer Graphics
  • CSS 451: 3D Computer Graphics
  • CSS 552: Topics in Rendering

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Selected Publications & Projects

Most Recent Publications

  • Kelvin Sung, Kent Foster, Stephanie Reimann, Mobile Computing, Smartphones, and Existing Computer Science Classes, to appear in Smart Phones in the Curriculum Workshop (SMACK 2011), 24th IEEE Conference on Software Engineering Education and Training, May 2011.
  • Hazeline Asuncion, David Socha, Kelvin Sung, Scott Berfield, Wanda Gregory, Serious Game Development As An Interactive User-Centered Agile Software Project, International Conference on Software Engineering (ICSE) Workshops, First Games and Software Engineering Workshop (GAS 2011), May 2011.
  • Peter Drake, and Kelvin Sung, Teaching Introductory Programming with Popular Board Games, To appear in SIGCSE 2011, March 2011.
  • K. Sung, C. Hillyard, R. Angotti, M. Panitz, D. Goldstein, J. Nordlinger, Game-Themed Programming Assignment Modules: A Pathway for Gradual Integration of Gaming Context into Existing Introductory Programming Courses, Accepted for publication, IEEE Transactions on Education, November, 2010.
  • M. Panitz, K. Sung, R. Reed-Rosenberg, Game Programming in CS0: A Scaffolded Approach, The Journal of Computing Sciences in Colleges, Vol. 26, No. 1, PP. 126-132, October 2010.
  • R. Angotti, C. Hillyard, M. Panitz, K. Sung, K. Marino, Game-Themed Instructional Modules: A Video Case Study, Proceedings of the Fifth International Conference on the Foundations of Digital Games (Monterey CA, USA) FDG ‘10, PP. 9-16, June 2010.
  • C. Hillyard, R. Angotti, M. Panitz, K. Sung, J. Nordlinger, D. Goldstein, Game-Themed Programming Assignments for Faculty: A Case Study, Proceedings of the 41st SIGCSE Technical Symposium on Computer Science Education (Milwaukee, WI, USA) SIGCSE '10, PP. 270-274, March 2010.

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Software Projects

Series of UWB Campus Tour Games (Recent)

  • Conquer the campus:
  • Sammy goes to UWB:
  • Zune-game: Come to campus, UW1-Reception Desk, you can check out a Zune and play an augmented reality game on the Zune while you explore our library solving a “who did it” mystery! (V1 Release: May 2010)
  • Android phone game: On your Android Phone, serve to Market Place and search for UWB. Download the game, come to our campus and help Sammy register/explore campus for the first day of class! (V1 Release: Oct 2010)


  • (1995-1999) One of the chief designers of Maya 1.0 Rendering system.

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Other Projects

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Industry Affiliations, Experiences, and Interests

  • Worked for Alias|Wavefront (now part of Adobe) on Maya renderer from 1995-1999, still have some contacts at Adobe.
  • Contacts at local games studios (e.g., FuelCell, BigFish, Foundation-9), mostly former CSS students and some of their hiring managers and/or HR.
  • Contacts at some of the 3D animation studios (e.g., PDI, Pixar).

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Random Point of Interests

I have never graduated from high school, but was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to continue with my education. I believe in second chances (or third or fourth); I believe anyone can begin pursuing anything at any point in their life, as long as they are willing to put in the proper commitment.

I love food I have never tried before. And, oh, I speak Mandarin, a little Cantonese, read and write Chinese.

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