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“Extending the graphic pipeline with new GPU-accelerated primitives”
Rodrigo Toledo and Bruno Lévy
Tech report, 2004

Abstract: Graphics hardware is optimized for rasterizing and solving the visibility of points, lines and polygons. In this paper, we propose a GPU implementation of new graphics primitives (e.g. spheres, cylinders, ellipsoids), which are compatible with the standard pipeline. Our technique consists of two steps, both executed on the GPU: (1) candidate pixels are pre-selected by rasterizing a standard primitive whose projection encloses the projection of our primitive; (2) for each candidate pixel, a fragment program computes the intersection and lighting, in a ray-tracing way, based on an analytic representation of our primitives. In addition, it replaces the Z-buffer value of the fragment according to the equation of our primitives. Our primitives are highly efficient. They are perfectly smooth under any arbitrary zoom. They consume much lower bandwidth than tesselated primitives (e.g. drawing a sphere only requires to send a GL POINT), and they have correct visibility/intersections with other primitives (including the standard ones).

BibTex reference

@TECHREPORT{toledo:EGP:2004,
   TITLE      = "Extending the graphic pipeline with new GPU-accelerated primitives",
   AUTHOR     = "Rodrigo Toledo and Bruno Lévy",
   INSTITUTION = "INRIA-ALICE",
   YEAR       = "2004",
}