Towards an Open Rendering Kernel for Image Synthesis



In order to use realistic image synthesis successfully in research and development as well as in commercial products, two important
prerequisites have to be fulfilled. First of all, good, accurate, robust, and
fast algorithms are required. Impressive progress has been made in this
respect during the last years, which has also been documented in this
workshop. The second step is the creation of a suitable and general soft-
ware architecture, that offers an environment into which these rendering
algorithms can be integrated.
In this paper, we develop an architecture that consists of a small, but
exible rendering kernel. This kernel provides a general framework for
rendering algorithms and defines suitable interfaces for specific aspects
of rendering, like reflection (BRDF) or emission. Algorithms for a certain
aspect of the rendering process can then be plugged into the kernel in
order to implement a particular rendering strategy. The benefits of this
approach is demonstrated with several applications.