Photo of a computer

3D Computers

With the trend of 3D films and television shows, 3D computers are the latest form of 3D technology.

3D computer graphics utilise the three dimensional representation of geometric data, stored on the computer for the purposes of performing calculations and rendering 2D images into amazing 3D display.

3D graphics actually rely on many of the algorithms, largely due to 2D computer vector graphics in the wire-frame model, as well as 2D raster graphics in the final rendered display.

How do 3D Computers work?

The distinction between 2D and 3D is often blurred, with 2D applications often using 3D techniques in order to achieve desired effects such as lighting and in contrast 3D technology often uses 2D rendering techniques.

3D models are often used to refer to these 3D computer graphics, with the model being contained within the graphical data file. A 3D model is used to refer to the mathematical representation of any three dimensional object and is not technically a graphic until it is displayed. These models are able to be displayed visually as a 2D image through 3D rendering or can also be used in non-graphical computer simulations.

When creating 3D computers and the graphics the process is divided into three general steps, including 3D modelling (the process of forming the object's shape), layout and animation, which is a description of the motion and placement of objects within a specific scene. 3D rendering creates a distinct image of an object in three dimensions.

3D computers relies on 3D modelling, which is the process by which 3D computers form the shape of an object. The two most popular 3D model sources are those that originated on the computer by an engineer or an artist, who use a 3D modelling tool.

These are scanned into 3D computers from real-world objects. As well as this you can produce 3D models procedurally or via physical simulation. Before you can render an image on a 3D computer they must be placed in a scene, defining the spatial relationship between objects including size and location.

Popular methods for rendering 3D images include keyframes, inverse kinematics and motion capture, although a large amount of these techniques are often used in conjunction with one another. When rendering a 3D computer image you convert the model into an image by one of two ways.

You can simulate light transport to get photorealistic images or alternatively you can apply a style such as non-photorealistic rendering. There are two basic operations in rendering a realistic image, these being transport and scattering. By using 3D computer graphics software or a 3D graphics API this can be achieved.

When purchasing 3D computers you are really purchasing a computer with a 3D graphics card and 3D display. It is not directly a 3D computer but is more concerned with the graphics projection. When altering a scene into a suitable rendering form you utilise 3D projection, allowing a 3D image to be seen in 2D also.

3D computers are already heavily utilised in industries such as architecture and animation, in order to see a 3D image, however they are becoming increasingly popular in domestic situations.