In computer graphics, there are three primary research areas: modeling, rendering, and animation, which is generally accepted by graphics practitioners. Modeling deals with the specification of shape and appearance in a way that can be represented mathematically and be stored on the computer. Rendering deals with the creation of shaded images, focusing on interactions between lights and 3D geometric models. Animation creates an illusion of motion through the sequence of images.
Physically-Based Real-Time RenderingDespite the strides made in graphics algorithms and hardware, rendering of natural phenomena remains challenging. In general, we sacrifice quality for real-time performance, which approximates physics. However, we believe there are always creative possibilities to improve images as similar in quality to reference solutions, while maintaining interactive real-time performance. GPUs (Graphics processing units) considerably help us to realize our novel algorithms and data structures with high performance.
Our former studies on lens blur effects and lens flare were successful attempts to prove our belief. Creative combinations of rasterization and ray tracing allowed us to achieve real-time performance and high image quality at the same time. We are still seeking for creative solutions to many open rendering problems.
* Associated grants: NRF Korea, 2012M3A6A3055695
Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality (VR/AR)Real-time global illumination for virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) requires to be computed with hard real-time constraints, usually higher than 60 frames per sec. We are trying to develop efficient techniques to achieve visually plausible and temporally coherent appearances. In particular, volume-based approximation of global illumination techniques are improved. Also, the global illumination techniques for pure VR are extended to AR with efficient acquisition of scene geometry, light sources, and materials from input video streams.
TeeVR (Third Eye Everywhere VR), a collaborative project with Perceptional Robotics Lab., Korea University, is our another attempt to realize high-quality VR/AR experiences. The key elements for TeeVR include high-quality acquisition of real-world geometries and synthesis of novel views from panoramic captures. This projects aims to surpass the classical image-based rendering techniques in terms of temporal coherence.
Stereoscopic (binocular) display needs to be employed to mediate interactive VR/AR experiences. Such display devices include head-mounted displays (HMDs) and projection displays, but they still incur visual fatigues in many optical and perceptual aspects. To cope with these problems, we investigate how to improve optical accuracy of VR display in terms of motion blur and optical aberrations.
* Associated grants: NRF Korea, 2012M3A6A3055695, Samsung Electronics 2016, ITRC for Mobile VR
High-Performance GPU ComputingRendering usually handles a gigantic amount of data. To facilitate rendering, graphics hardware has been rapidly evolving the recent decades. One of the important advances is user-programmable rendering pipeline. Accordingly, the capability of GPU expands beyond the traditional usage to encompass general-purpose computing. We attempt to achieve improved performance in general computing up to order of two magnitudes. Such an approach is focused on creative algorithms rather than a simple use of GPU and CUDA/OpenCL.
* Associated grants: NRF Korea, 2012R1A2A2A01045719
Perception-Based VisualizationEffective visualization of informative data involves in-depth understandings on human visual perception principles. Unlike common approaches based on image analysis, our research advances more to image synthesis solutions, leading to perceptually-effective visualization. Visual saliency is one of the important keys to such approaches.
* Associated grants: NRF Korea, 2011-0014015