Community Publication Portal

Welcome to the BRL-CAD community publication portal. This page is dedicated to the preparation and editing of community publications for BRL-CAD.

This is the place to learn what publications are proposed or upcoming, which are actively being worked on, and their individual editorial status. You are welcome and encouraged to help share news about recent events or current activities taking place within the BRL-CAD community.

Note: if you see a comment indicating that a section is FROZEN, any changes you make in that section may go unnoticed. If you find errors in a FROZEN article, contact Sean (brlcad on freenode IRC) who may be able to incorporate changes during final publication.

Formatting & Editing Standards:

Feel free to fix if you see something non-standard.

  • Beginning quotations are italicized and placed between double quotes (wiki formatting requires 2 single quotes, space, double quote to achieve this)
  • All acronyms need to be defined (Like This) upon first use; further use can use the acronym only
  • Titles and Section Headings are bold (achieved by placing text between three single quotes); each should be Title Case (Meaning UpperCase the Major Words)
  • Use the serial comma. One, two, and three; not one, two and three.
  • Prefer first person for release notes, third person for everything else.
  • Do not abbrev. words.
  • Cite references and/or include hyperlinks.
  • Keep it brief.

Distribution Channels:

For release publications, follow HACKING. For everything else, distribute to the following:


Ready for Publication

These are articles ready for publication. Release notes should follow a release and get published within the first week of the month. Other publications should be scheduled one or two weeks later, ideally on the third week of the month.



Final Editorial Review

These should be "complete" articles. The author is done with the content and all that remains is a review of structure, grammar, voice, punctuation, and spelling. Images may be added as well.



Initial Drafts

These are incomplete articles being worked on. Most articles should be between 250 and 500 words (not counting tables, labels, and diagrams) before they have enough content to be considered complete.

Cliff Yapp, 2010DEC22: NURBS Ray Tracing in BRL-CAD

Over the past year, an intense development effort by BRL-CAD's development team has successfully implemented raytracing of Non-Uniform Rational BSpline (NURBS) geometry within the BRL-CAD Computer-Aided Design (CAD) package. NURBS surfaces are very general, very complex mathematical shapes used by virtually all modern commercial CAD software packages. Because BRL-CAD did not originally support this type of geometry, commercial models could only be imported into BRL-CAD after a labor-intensive and difficult conversion process from NURBS form to triangle-base geometry (referred to in BRL-CAD as Bags-of-Triangles or BoTs). The new NURBS raytracing capability builds on work by many developers over a period of years, who in turn built on the open source library OpenNURBS. Support for this primitive type means BRL-CAD can now store and raytrace data from commercial models without requiring preliminary conversion to another type of geometry.

The last major feature needed to make import of commercial models in BRL-CAD straightforward is conversion support for ISO’s "Standard for the Exchange of Product model data" or STEP file format. STEP uses NURBS geometry in its definition, making support for NURBS geometry a necessary prelude to support for STEP import. Most commercial CAD modelers support this file format as an output option, hence STEP support in BRL-CAD would allow a direct path for moving geometric descriptions from a variety of commercial modelers to BRL-CAD. Considerable progress has already been made on STEP import support, but more work is need to bring the code and feature set to "production quality". If anyone would like to join the BRL-CAD open source development effort and has a little familiarity with C++, the step-g converter and its supporting libraries have some simple-yet-useful tasks that would be an excellent and very useful way to explore the project - join BRL-CAD's IRC channel or development email list if you are interested!


Idea Hopper

These are ideas for interesting or useful publications. We need someone to at least write a draft.

Erik Greenwald: ADRT/ISST Visualization

Article introducing ADRT/ISST core capability.

Bob Parker: Alpha Archer: Working Towards Next Generation MGED

Article introducing Archer's core new features that will be "coming" to MGED. Undo, interactive editing, tree view, and info panels come to mind.

Finding the Hot Spots

Article on the rt lighting model Stephen Kennedy developed that visualizes the time spent per-pixel.

Point Clouds

Article introducing the new point cloud primitive.

bn_mat_inv: singular matrix

Article on the v4 format and binary compatibility.

Model Showcase: Goliath

Article talking about the making of the Goliath model.

Model Showcase: Chumaciera

Article on Pedro Baptista's bearing model.

Model Showcase: Proyecto Catapulta

Article on a model developed by André Santos, António Almeida, and Pedro Ferreira.

Model Showcase: Union Coupling Tool

Article on a model developed by Inês de Matos under teacher Luís Ferreira. The project focuses on a tool, union coupling, based on the book, http://purl.pt/14352 , page 122 of the original book and page 128 of the file, figures 108 and 109.

Geometry Service FAQ

FAQ summarization of the GS as it pertains to the wider open source community.

BRL-CAD's 3rd Generation Build System

Article on the new CMake build system.

BRL-CAD's Open Source Vision

Article introducing the Project Priorities diagram and overall project vision.

BRL-CAD Primitives Showcase

Article summarizing all of BRL-CAD's primitives and their current status.

BRL-CAD Geometry Converter Showcase

Article summarizing all of BRL-CAD's geometry converters.

Release Schedule

Explain our release schedule and versioning system.

RTGL

Article on Nick's point-based visualization mode.

BRL-CAD Quick Reference Card

Article on a BRL-CAD QRC similar to the existing MGED QRC.

BRL-CAD Bibliography

After the .bib gets published to the website, an article announcing it and soliciting additions.

Revolve Primitive

Article on Timothy Van Ruitenbeek's work implementing 'revolve'.

Parametrics and Constraints

Article on Dawn Thomas' work to integrate parametric equation and constraint evaluation support.

Converting Implicit to Explicit: CSG to BREP NURBS

Article on the work by Cliff Yapp, Joe Doliner, and Ben Poole converting primitives with an implicit representation into an explicit NURBS representation.

Online Model Repository

Article on Elena Băutu's work developing the model repository website.

Project Statistics for 2010

Article on our current stats similar to previous years.

Next Generation BRL-CAD

Article on our super secret awesome new GUI.