During the scheduled lab hours, you are expected to familiarize yourself with the commercial software title Terragen from Planetside Software (planetside.co.uk). Terragen is designed to create large scale procedurally generated environments: entire planets.
The version of Terragen installed in the lab (K4507) is about a year old. The current version is slightly better, because of some improvements to rendering quality and rendering speed. I suggest you run the most current version instead. There is a zipped folder below with the free (unlicensed) version of Terragen 4.4, which is perfectly adequate for the simple scenes you are expected to create for this lab session. To run it, unpack the archive to a folder on a local disk where you have write permissions (in the lab, this means the "Documents" folder) and run "tgd.exe".
Note that the short version of the lab instructions are in Swedish. For an introduction in English, please refer to the official Terragen tutorial. It's functionally equivalent, although considerably more heavy on details. Those of you who understand Swedish might also prefer the English tutorial if you feel that my brief introduction is insufficient to get you started. My text is really very brief.
I do not expect you to create something truly artistic or technically amazing during the lab hours. The lab session is mainly intended as a supervised introduction. To fulfil the requirements for the lab exercise, you are expected to take a step back, think a little about what you would like to do with the tool you just learned, and spend a few hours more creating a scene that is reasonably well planned and executed. That scene doesn't have to be amazing, but it should be something considerably different from the first tutorial, and it should be based on your own ideas and reasonably good looking in terms of image quality and visual interest.
If you feel like doing more with this software, using it for the final project in the course is definitely an option, although it could be difficult to achieve an absolutely top grade by using a tool that doesn't require quite as much understanding of the technical details as if you set out to write your own code.
Render a nice view of your planet in resolution 1024x768 pixels, save it in JPEG format (important!) and submit your result by using the form below:
Terragen contains lots of functionality to create "populations", suitable for creating vegetation in a scene. Unfortunately, the basic version of the software supplies no models of plants to populate the scene. A very limited demo selection is in the archive linked below, in case you want to try putting some trees and bushes into your scene. Note that these files are copyrighted, so please do not distribute them.