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ErraticSE

Physics expertise for video games

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I''m a computer science major who is interested in game physics. I am taking some cool physics coarses but am not sure how far to go with them. The next coarse I''m looking at has alot of stuff I know I won''t need for videogames (quantum machanics, nuclear physics...) but it also has stuff on optics which I guess could be usefull for lighting effects. Should I take the coarse or is it not necessary?

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Readers might actually be amazed to learn that quantum mechanics and nuclear physics have a lot to do with computer games... or at least, they''ll have a lot more to do with them in the years to come! Both of these fields rely on a description of events that draws on the mathematics of probability theory and statistics. There is direct application of these mathematical techniques to AI, especially for computer games! Heck, understanding quantum mechanics is all about understanding how information flows and interacts... and this is something that is vital for simulated worlds and simulated agents!

Of course, these courses are definitely interesting in their own right! If you are taking courses in physics, I really hope you''re also taking courses in applied mathematics... many physicists THINK they understand the maths... but they don''t often teach it well, because, what they really understand is the physics... and they often don''t know the whole mathematical picture linking one field of study to another!

Cheers,

Timkin

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This course your speaking of...is it just one course? If so, don''t expect to go into detail in any one of the given subjects you mentioned (QM, nuclear and optics). There is enough subject matter in each of those areas to have several specialized courses dedicated to them.

I do agree with Timkin regarding the applied mathematics. I''m in the process of completeling my PhD in Engineering Physics, and most of my math knowledge comes from my undergraduate applied mathematics courses, and not my undergraduate physics courses.

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