Topology and performance are the two main topics dealt in the development of robotic mechanisms. However, it is still a challenge to connect them by integrating the modeling and design process of both parts in a unified frame. As the properties associated with topology and performance, finite motion and instantaneous motion of the robot play key roles in the procedure. On the purpose of providing a fundamental preparation for integrated modeling and design, this paper carries out a review on the existing unified mathematic frameworks for motion description and computation, involving matrix Lie group and Lie algebra, dual quaternion and pure dual quaternion, finite screw and instantaneous screw. Besides the application in robotics, the review of the work from these mathematicians concentrates on the description, composition and intersection operations of the finite and instantaneous motions, especially on the exponential-differential maps which connect the two sides. Furthermore, an in-depth discussion is worked out by investigating the algebraical relationship among these methods and their further progress in integrated robotic development. The presented review offers insightful investigation to the motion description and computation, and therefore would help designers to choose appropriate mathematical tool in the integrated design and modeling and design of mechanisms and robots.