Status Report
July 4, 2010 - Coding, Graphics

I’m currently about halfway through my internship on the OptiX software team and I’m very much enjoying the work. I’m learning quite a bit about advanced graphics algorithms and the concepts that allow them to execute efficiently on a GPU. In particular, thinking at the level of optimizing read/write throughput or reducing individual arithmetic operations has certainly broadened my understanding about how to make ray tracing quicker.

If you want to see OptiX in action, I’d suggest starting with NVIDIA Design Garage, which uses OptiX as the ray tracing backend for rendering a variety of cars and scenes (like the image on the right). You can download the programĀ from this page but you’ll need a pretty beefy video card to run it.

If that doesn’t satisfy you, then just download the OptiX SDK and start playing with it! There are a number of tutorials and samples to help you get started, and the 2.0 release is right around the corner, bringing wider hardware support, more flexibility, and better performance.

Summer Update
May 8, 2010 - Coding, Graphics, Juggling, Site News

Now that this semester has drawn to a close, I thought I’d take the time and bring some pages up to date. Firstly, I’ve updated the Global Illumination Ray Tracer page with details of my work over the past two semesters. There are pictures of almost all of the features and descriptions of how/why they were implemented. Last semester I focused on a broad variety of ray-tracing techniques while this semester focused primarily on motion blur, so there is a good mix of work presented.

Secondly, I’ve added a page detailing my work on Juggleville V: The King of Clubs which happened a little over a month ago. We were rather ambitious in our design goals for the show and I was very excited to see our ideas come to fruition.

Lastly, this summer I’ll be in Salt Lake City, UT interning for NVIDIA. I’m going to be a part of a team doing research into GPU-based ray-tracing which is an area with great potential for cool work.

Cornell Box
November 15, 2009 - Coding, Graphics

After tweaking the material system and lighting, I decided to make a traditional Cornell box scene to test out the changes.

I’ve also been implementing several optimizations to speed up rendering. I tested the Cornell box scene before and after the optimizations and render time was reduced by almost 80%. The image on the right took about a minute and a half to render on my quad-core machine.

In terms of the coming weeks, the photon mapping implementation is in progress and will be my primary area of focus alongside some more minor features I have planned, such as anisotropic reflections.

Mirrors Everywhere!
November 13, 2009 - Coding, Graphics

spheresinroomI have no newsworthy developments to share, but as I was experimenting with various aspects of my Global Illumination Ray Tracer this evening I thought it would be fun to make an image with metallic spheres in a room with reflective surfaces. This scene also gave me a chance to see multiple area lights and heavy recursion at their finest, since I hadn’t really gone out of my way to create an image with so much going on before.

The scene was rendered with 16 shadow rays per sample for the soft shadows and 16 jittered samples per pixel with a tent filter.