Index Unit Notes

CM40198 Digital Media

Welcome to the Digital Media Unit. This document provides all the material to go with the Unit, so you might like to add this page to your browser favourites/bookmarks.

There will be assessment consisting of coursework during the semester (25% of the total assessment score) and a written examination at the end (75%). Follow the index to find the Assignment: it is presented as a self-contained document in case you want to print it out or save it. You may start the Assignment as soon as you wish.

Use the index at the left to reach the components of this site. The "Start" entry always brings you back to this page. Lecture Notes may be updated as we go, to help clarify any points arising.

What is the Unit about?

The syllabus is available here.

Timing: Spring semester

Assessment: 75% examination; 25% coursework.

Reading List

You should find all you need in the lecture notes and by asking questions during the problem classes, so a book is not necessary. If you wish to read further, there is one book which is quite close to the contents of this Unit.

Digital Multimedia (2nd edition)
Nigel Chapman and Jenny Chapman
ISBN 0-470-85890-7
This is probably the best general book for the Unit. It does not have the same technical detail as Bates (below) but, for the same reason, offers a broader view, much is this Unit does.

There are many books which provide help with particular aspects of digital media. You might find these helpful as support material, especially for practical work or for summer projects. I like the following.

  • The Web Wizard's Guide To ...
    There is a series of books with this generic title, such as "The Web Wizard's Guide To HTML" or "...To Multimedia". They are tightly focussed, clearly-written practical books. There is a web site with current offerings. Concentrating on one topic, they are excellent to get you through the familiarisation barrier. Well-suited to novices and useful short reference books generally. The publisher is Addison Wesley.
  • Web Programming
    Author Chris Bates, published by Wiley. This is a good, technology-based book for the web half of the unit. It covers HTML, JavaScript, Perl, CGI scripts, XML, design issues and software packages. A good book to have on the shelf, especially if you intend to do a project or find a job in this area. Suitable if you want/need a comprehensive understanding; not a good choice if you don't like lots of technological detail.
There are other books with multimedia or digital media in the title which, at first glance, seem promising. If they work for you, fine, but I do suggest you are wary of books which emphasise too much the hype, talk in generalities and rely too heavily on the author's favourite package. This Unit is mainly about the core technology and such books tend to be light on that kind of material.

Philip Willis