Radzilla 1.1

Radzilla is a port of the well known physically based ray tracer Radiance to the C++ programming language.

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Carsten Bauer
ROOT \ Science and Engineering \ Visualization
Radzilla is a port of the well known physically based ray tracer Radiance to the C++ programming language, including a GUI based on the QT toolkit from Trolltech.

Radzilla project aims at modifying and optimizing classic Radiance for complex visualization applications in architecture, art or design.

The project started in 2004, 1 1/2 years after Radiance itself became Open Source. In its first stages, it was a means to collect previous Radiance-related work (self-developed, like the direct cache or the color4pict primitive, or externally developed, like Roland Schregle's Photon Map) and merge it with the classic core.

Further developments followed soon (like the 'scene' primitive or a new source partitioning scheme). With the recent implementation of a GUI frontend, the focus has temporarily moved more to the periphery.

The overall aim is not to hide the complexity of Radiance, but just to make the use and handling of it easier. Including image processing features based on Radiance classic modules (pfilt, pcond) in the new Version 1.1 now means a next step towards setting up a new environment for working with the plethora of tools offered by the Radiance suite, either in their original version or enhanced with additional features.

Here are some key features of "Radzilla":

Code restructuring

· The majority of the Radzilla core consists out of original Radiance code, which is just rearranged, modularized and grouped into C++ classes. The idea was to get aquainted with C++ and object oriented programming, nothing more. Radiance itself is highly optimized, so there is simply no need to rewrite everything.

Increased Flexibility

· Radzilla offers a higher degree of flexibility and modularization, e.g. with the possibility to set individual render parameters for each light source, or with the 'scene' primitive, which lets you insert a full scene including light sources and a different set of render parameters.

New Material and Modifier Primitives

· A handful of new modifiers have been introduced, offering more (or easier) ways to modify surface and medium properties, generate falsecolor output for selected objects, perform semitransparent image mapping etc.

New Modules

· Radzilla currently contains the 'Photon Map', a forward raytracer routine written by Roland Schregle at Fraunhofer ISE, Freiburg, an optional 'New Source Partitioning Scheme' and the 'Direct Cache', an optimization strategy for scenes containing many light sources.

Full compatibility with classic Radiance

· Radzilla supports all geometry and material/modifier primitives, all parameters and the octree structure of Radiance classic, i.e. it accepts any valid Radiance input. It also produces the same output format (a Radiance 'pic').
· The word 'full' has to be taken cum grano salis. In turn of continuing development on both branches, you will unfortunately find the one or the other newly added Radiance classic option which is not supported yet by Radzilla.


· Radiance

What's New in This Release:

· Many optimizations and an image editor were added.

Last updated on May 5th, 2006

#ray tracer #lighting simulation #Radiance port #Radzilla #ray #tracer #lighting

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