Date of Award


Document Type

Thesis open access


Computer Science


Researchers have proposed several methods of representing three-dimensional objects in computer memory along with different methods of displaying these objects on two-dimensional computer displays. Using a polygon-based representation that linearly interpolates between a set of sample points is by far the most popular way of representing objects today, mostly because of its ability to display an object on a computer screen at a fast and consistent rate. However, as graphics hardware increases in speed, polygon-based models prove to be increasingly inefficient. Point-based representations have been proposed that consist of densely sampling some surface and using solely the samples to portray the object on a computer display. This research proposes a similar approach to point-based representation while making use of current graphics hardware to compare the benefits and drawbacks of using point-based representations over polygon-based representations in interactive environments. An experiment has been conducted with human subjects to gather perceptual data about each representation method. The results from this experiment are presented and analyzed.