Managing level of detail (LOD) is at once a very
current and a very old topic in computer graphics. As early as 1976
James Clark described the benefits of representing objects within a
scene at several resolutions, and flight simulators have long used
handcrafted multiresolution models of airplanes to achieve a constant
frame rate. Recent years have seen many algorithms, papers, and
software tools devoted to generating and managing such multiresolution
representations of objects automatically. Indeed, an entire field of
computer graphics dedicated to regulating level of detail virtually
exploded into existence in the early 1990s. This book presents a
detailed treatment of that field.
In this book we:
Survey the state of the art, describing past and current research
as well as trends and open questions in the field to date.
Discuss the theoretical underpinnings of the field, such as visual
perception, measuring geometric error, and evaluating temporal factors
such as frame rate and latency.
Provide an applied resource for graphics developers, detailing a
host of useful algorithms and addressing two applications of
particular interest: video games and terrain visualization.
Please refer to the Table of Contents for
a detailed breakdown of the topics covered.
We have developed this website to accompany the book.
Here you will find various helpful resources, such as source code to many of the
systems described in the text, links to polygon simplification products, tools, 3D
models, and documentation. Our aim is to supplement the descriptions
in the book with
practical material that developers can use today in their applications. We will also use
this site to publish updated information about the book such as errata or revision
announcements. This website provides us with a more timely mechanism to keep
our readers, and the community at large,
up to date with the latest developments in the field of level of detail.