Physically Based Rendering, Second Edition: From Theory To Implementation

Posted: October 29, 2011 in News

I picked up the second copy of PBR today as I like to keep my book collection up to date. I’m not the biggest fan of the book as I find it difficult to read and I dont like the approach they took of explaing how to implement such a tool, Im more a fan of having something simple that works at multiple stages of the process and building it up, as is done in “Ray Tracing from the Ground Up”, which is a much easier read. The new edition brings in new sections on Subsurface Scattering, Metropolis Light Transport and Precomputed Light Transport and some other stuff. They also made two quite big changes, one was to do away with the DLL module approach, which I agree with; it was needless complexity, but they’ve also introduced threading. I think this was a bad move to be honest, as again it adds a lot of complexity. I think these kinds of books should only focus on the problem at hand which is producing Physically Accurate Images, not producing Physically Accurate Images …FAST. I have threading in my RayTracer, and whilst it wasnt that difficult to implement, a lot of the code has to be changed/organised differently to accommodate it, which just makes the task all the more difficult when you’re first starting out. Unfortunatly its not something they could have just chucked in the appendix, as threading needs to be thought about from the very beginning, but I think it should have been left out.

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