5/30/2001: ATI presents the technology TRUFORM of his futures chips
Since somewhere near the 80s the first engines were appearing 3D, with games as The Centinel for Spectrum, up to the most recent like Blade, the advance in the treatment 3D has been notable and more from the appearance of the cards 3D servants. The quality of the image 3D has increased greatly but at the cost of more powerful and expensive cards that can move the immense quantity of triangles that form every object. The golden rule has been "all the more triangles, more precise and real is the image".
But skylight, this skill has the disadvantages of needing increasingly a graphic chip more powerful (GPU) to operate with the triangles, more memory to store them and major consumption of the breadth of memory. In this sense, ATI is thinking about having solved the problem with his newly presented new technology, TRUFORM (a true form acronym, real form).
Basically this skill consists of using what ATI names N-Patches, that is to say: to draw, from a relatively scarce number of triangles, Bezier curves for the method of interpolation, which fit to the real curvature of the object; to divide then these "basic" triangles in smaller and better exact triangles to this real curvature, and to apply on them the textures and the lighting effects. This way, the realism and the quality each of the represented objects would increase greatly.
Nevertheless, the real benefit is not so much the increase of the quality of image, since the same effect might be obtained by the "brute force" of the classic method (more "basic" triangles, "not truformeados"), but in the reduction of the necessary band of memory. To do an idea to us, a figure of high quality formed by 10.000 triangles to obtain approximately 60 fps would occupy 30 MB/s of the band. Using TRUFORM only it needs 1,2 MB/s, that is to say, 25 times less, because the band comes down practically to that of the scarce "basic" triangles (approximately 400 in this example). And all the calculations extra are on account of the graphic chip (of the graphic ATI chip, for more signs).
TRUFORM is compatible with DirectX 8 and OpenGL and one hopes that the ATI RADEON 2 (available about September of this year) should be optimized for this skill. Also, it can be used in cards that do not support it: simply, renderizarán more or less basic triangles, with better or worse quality as his potency. Also, apparently, TRUFORM turns out to be easy to programme, what will influence decisively his use in the future games. Well for the ATI boys.
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News written for: Ignacio Jiménez of the Ship