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To my Mom, my step-dad, my sister Gabby,
and all of my friends.
And also to an imaginary tiger-sized cat.
ow many times have you visited your favorite programming
forum or mailing list and been amazed at the sheer number
of posts on terrain rendering algorithms that seem to fly at you from
every angle? Terrain rendering seems to be a favorite subject among
today’s hobbyist programmers; it serves as an excellent portal to more
demanding problems and their solutions. However, terrain rendering
is by no means a simple problem, and a particular solution can get
rather complex. People from all walks of “programming” life have
tried their hand at coming up with the next best solution for rendering
their idea of a perfect world. Some even dare say that there are as
many terrain rendering algorithms as there are people who write
terrain engines. Most of these solutions are variations of more widely
accepted solutions. These solutions are generally accepted by people
as solutions that give good performance. Some of them have been
around for quite a while and have been modified over the years to
adapt to the ever-changing hardware they are meant to run on.
This book takes three of these generally accepted solutions and puts
them through their paces. I am very pleased to say that one of these
solutions came from my very own puddle of programming ideas
I have popping up every now and again in a flash of enlightenment.
As this book compares three terrain rendering solutions without any
prejudice or bias, I am not one to talk about them, obviously. I will
leave that to the author.
—Willem H. de Boer
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