LEGO Raytracing Tools
The LEGO raytracing project has exercised the features of many tools.
The ones I could remember are listed below:
- POV-Ray 2.2
- All of our current work is created with
the Persistence of Vision Ray Tracer
with the Faster Than POV patches applied and some other local enhancements.
Walnut Creek sells
Raytrace! The Official POV-Ray CDROM
which includes POV-Ray and other useful programs and cool images (including BJTOYS.JPG).
- xli 1.17
- My image viewer of choice is xli 1.17, which is a recent release
by Smarasderagd available from
his programming page.
For years I used a modified version of xli 1.16,
based on xloadimage 3.01 and enhanced by
Graeme Gill (firstname.lastname@example.org)
It's available for ftp as
- The ghostscript PostScript interpreter is useful for creating imagemaps and
text overlays. It's a GNU tool, available as
ghostscript-2.6.2.tar.gz and requires some basic fonts,
For viewing large documents, it's easist to drive it with
- The netpbm package is a huge collection of image conversion and
manipulation filters which are invaluable to anyone who works with image
The netpbm project started when Jef Poskanzer
decided to stop work on PBMPlus. After the 1mar1994 release, he announced
that he was going to take over the project again and asked the netpbm group
to quit making releases.
The last official netpbm release is available from several places as
A patched version created after more than a year of waiting for Jef to
make a realease contains many of the updates sent to the mailing list and
is available as
- Utah Raster Toolkit 3.1b
- The Utah Raster Toolkit is a collection of small, specific image
conversion and manipulation programs that's similar to PBMPlus/netpbm.
It works with RLE images, which is the format output by Rayshade.
The latest version is available as
- jpeg library
- In order to create an manipulate JPEG images for archival and distribution,
I use the "sample applications" which come with JPEG library, cjpeg/djpeg,
which interface with the PBMPlus/netpbm toolkit. The library is available
for ftp as
- xpaint 2.1.1
- Most of the early image map work was done with xpaint, a "DonateWare"
paint program for X written by David Koblas
(email@example.com). It desperately
needs updating, but with a few patches it is fairly stable.
It was submitted to the X11R5 contrib distribution as
- Aldus Freehand 4.0
- Jer does most of the image map work in Aldus Freehand, a powerful
Windows based drawing program. He then exports the images as Windows
BMP files which are moved to UNIX and converted to GIFs.
Aldus was sold to Macromedia.
The current version is
- A tool for making animated GIFs. It has its own
home page with lots
of information about the program and links to other gif animation related
- XAnim is a program for viewing a wide variety of animation formats under
X11. You can find out about features and releases at
The XAnim Home Page,
maintained by Mark Podlipec, the author.
- Xfig is a powerful drawing program for X which I occasionally use to
create image maps. Transfig is the back end which exports xfig drawings
in various formats. Both are available for ftp as
- Quick window projects are easy with Tcl/Tk by
John K. Ousterhout.
Now that Dr. Ousterhout is at
Sun Microsystems there is a new
Tcl/Tk home page at Sun
which has ftp information.
The minifig poser is written in Tk, and uses a cheezy extension I wrote to
render the wireframe minifig.
- For quick scripting projects
is extremely handy. It is also used to construct completed minifig objects
from a description list.
Most of our work is done under
FreeBSD. You can get
FreeBSD on CDROM
from Walnut Creek.
- xv 3.10a
- I occasionally use xv by John Bradley to play with the color
maps of GIF images. It's also handy for finding the coordinates of
points in an image. It is available for ftp as