Browse Definitions:
Definition

ray tracing (raytracing, ray-tracing or ray casting)

This definition is part of our Essential Guide: Enterprise 3D printing tutorial: CIO challenges and advice

Ray tracing (also called raytracing, ray-tracing or ray casting) is a technique for presenting three-dimensional (3D) images on a two-dimensional (2D) display by tracing a path of light through pixels on an image plane.

A ray tracing program mathematically identifies and reproduces the path that each light ray follows in reverse direction from the eye back to its point of origin. The path of each light ray consists of multiple straight-line components and nearly always involves reflection, refraction, or shadow effects from points within the scene. In animation, the position and orientation of the straight-line components of each ray constantly vary so each ray is represented by a mathematical equation that defines its path through space as a function of time. Rays are assigned a color based on the pigments the objects in the scene that the ray passes through and each pixel on the display corresponds to a ray.

Ray tracing was first developed in the 1960s by scientists at an organization known as Mathematical Applications Group. Ray tracing is used extensively in computer gaming and animation, television and DVD programming and movie production.

This was last updated in March 2011

Continue Reading About ray tracing (raytracing, ray-tracing or ray casting)

Start the conversation

Send me notifications when other members comment.

By submitting you agree to receive email from TechTarget and its partners. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. Privacy

Please create a username to comment.

-ADS BY GOOGLE

File Extensions and File Formats

Powered by:

SearchCompliance

  • pure risk (absolute risk)

    Pure risk, also called absolute risk, is a category of threat that is beyond human control and has only one possible outcome if ...

  • risk assessment

    Risk assessment is the identification of hazards that could negatively impact an organization's ability to conduct business.

  • audit program (audit plan)

    An audit program, also called an audit plan, is an action plan that documents what procedures an auditor will follow to validate ...

SearchSecurity

SearchHealthIT

SearchDisasterRecovery

  • business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR)

    Business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR) are closely related practices that describe an organization's preparation for ...

  • business continuity plan (BCP)

    A business continuity plan (BCP) is a document that consists of the critical information an organization needs to continue ...

  • call tree

    A call tree -- sometimes referred to as a phone tree -- is a telecommunications chain for notifying specific individuals of an ...

SearchStorage

  • nearline storage

    Nearline storage is the on-site storage of data on removable media.

  • application-aware storage

    Application-aware storage is a storage system with built-in intelligence about relevant applications and their utilization ...

  • Remote Direct Memory Access (RDMA)

    Remote Direct Memory Access (RDMA) is a technology that allows computers in a network to exchange data in main memory without ...

SearchSolidStateStorage

  • 3D XPoint

    3D XPoint is memory storage technology jointly developed by Intel and Micron Technology Inc.

  • RRAM or ReRAM (resistive RAM)

    RRAM or ReRAM (resistive random access memory) is a form of nonvolatile storage that operates by changing the resistance of a ...

  • JEDEC

    JEDEC is a global industry group that develops open standards for microelectronics.

SearchCloudStorage

  • Google Cloud Storage

    Google Cloud Storage is an enterprise public cloud storage platform that can house large unstructured data sets.

  • RESTful API

    A RESTful application program interface breaks down a transaction to create a series of small modules, each of which addresses an...

  • cloud storage infrastructure

    Cloud storage infrastructure is the hardware and software framework that supports the computing requirements of a private or ...

Close