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This is your final for CS 5630/6630.

The assignment is due at midnight on December 15th, 2008. You will need to use the CADE handin functionality to turn in your assignment. The class account is "cs5630".

This assignment was successfully tested in release 1.2.1rev1336. It should work fine in releases >=1.2.1rev1336. Check your release before starting your work and upgrade it if necessary.

As usual, as you work on the assignment, we encourage you to read the available documentation on both python and VTK. Remember that VisTrails allows you to easily access the VTK documentation. To see the documentation of a VTK module in the Modules panel, just right click on its name and choose View Documentation in the context menu. Analogously, you can right click on a method's name in the Methods panel to see it's documentation. Some of the problems will require you to use VTK modules you might not have previously seen.

General Hints

We have provided a PythonSource module that inspects and prints out the dataset. Take advantage of this to fully explore the various properties and fields of this data.


The data for this assignment are in three files:

Final.vt (Final.vt)

stream2q.bin (download)

stream2XYZ.bin (download)

  • Final.vt is the VisTrails file to be used as starting point. This .vt includes HTTPFiles and appropriate readers to download and read in the data. Both data are used to form a single VTK dataset.

Dataset Description

This dataset is the result of astrophysical simulation of a binary star system. This single snapshot of the simulation is from timestep 2172 of the evolving system. While the overall simualtion tracks many variables, here we present just a few. Scientists studying these simulations are interested in many aspects of this data. The primary feature of the data are the two stars being simulated. These stars interact with each other by stripping matter from the other one. This act of interstellar feeding produces stars of various sizes, masses, and densities that vary over time. A good discussion of binary star systems can be found at:


Create 1 or more visualizations that convey interesting aspects of this data to the viewer. Please label the visualizations of interest as follows: Visualization 1, Visualization 2, ... Visualization N

For each visualization produced, describe in the Notes section what aspect, or feature, of the data the visualization highlights and what you learned about the overall data from it.

The following questions should be answered by your visualizations - To maximize your scores, try to form visualizations that highlight features in the data that are not necessarily covered by the following questions.

Sample Questions

Is the dataset symmetric?

Which star is gaining mass (the accretor)?

Which star has the more quickly changing density surrounding it?


This is designed to be very open-ended. You should submit a .vt that forms enough visualizations that you feel the data is fully explored. Some possible questions that your visualizations should be able to answer:

Potential Problems