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Re: a little wizardry needed

  • To: hanson at cs.indiana.edu (Andrew J. Hanson)
  • Subject: Re: a little wizardry needed
  • From: slevy
  • Date: Wed, 2 Feb 94 20:33:46 -0600

> From hanson at cs.indiana.edu Wed Feb  2 17:44:49 1994
> From: hanson at cs.indiana.edu (Andrew J. Hanson)
> Date: Wed, 2 Feb 1994 18:44:46 EST
> To: slevy at geom
> Subject: a little wizardry needed
> Stuart-
>   I gather you have already heard from one of my enthusiastic students
> (Juan Villaci) trying to link together geomview to a networked
> Mathematica (we have few machines that run both!); he says that worked
> perfectly - thanks for your help!
>   I have one other problem:  I assigned the students the task of
> creating an object file to be read by geomview, and then asked them
> to put a high-resolution picture of the object in a LaTeX document.
> The module PS Snapshot seems to do that, but it stores polygons
> instead of pixels.
>   -suppose we want eps Postscript pixels:  when we run the print...
> menu and select "save" instead of print, you get a popup that says
> Renderer - localhost?  And then if you click OK, it cranks for about
> 10 minutes and produces a file that, after running it through psfix
> to make it encapsulated, prints as a black square.  It seems not to
> have rendered at all.
>   We do not have renderman, but I have made this work at least a couple
> of times somehow without it;  but now something seems to make the pictures
> always black, regardless of what fiddling I do with the Inspector colors
> of foreground and background, as though it really wasn't rendering
> after all, despite the 10 minutes of cranking.
>   Bottom line is:
> 1. how to make a decent ps/eps image file using the print... menu;
>   are we missing an installation of a default renderer?
> 2. is there any difference in the result if we use print... rather
>    than the "PS Snapshot" module?  Is there any better way to generate
>    high-quality images to print on, e.g., our color Tektronix Phaser 
>    using dvips'd LaTeX?
> Thanks!
>    Andy

I'm not sure what's the story with the "Print" menu item.  It seems to do
different things for different people, and I don't know why.  Anyone else know?

There are several ways to get an image:
  PS Snapshot has the advantage of producing full-resolution polygons;
   you'll never see jaggies.  However it ignores the Geomview
   material & lighting setup, etc.  Also it uses a simple depth-sort on the
   polygons, which is easy and often correct but can fail.

  Another option: in Geomview, save the scene in RenderMan format
   (RMan -> tiff) in some file, e.g. "fred.rib".  Then run Renderman
   (which you really do have): from a shell window type
	/usr/prman/prman  fred.rib
   It will produce a file "fred.tiff" in the same directory where "fred.rib"
   was saved (i.e. same file name with .rib -> .tiff).  Should take much
   less than 10 minutes unless you've a very complicated scene.
   Image size will be the same as the geomview window size (though you could
   edit the .rib file to change it; see the Format line.  Take care to
   preserve aspect ratio if you do.)

  A speedier but lower-quality option is to use /NextApps/Grab.app
   to grab the contents of a Next window as a .tiff image.  Start Grab,
   pick Grab -> Selection from its menu, then click and drag across the
   geomview window.  When you release, a snapshot window appears.
   Save it (as a .tiff file) from the Grab menu.

  The latter two methods produce .tiff files.  To convert to EPSF, 
  it's easiest to use the PBM toolkit programs.  From a shell:
     tifftopnm fred.tiff | pnmtops > fred.ps
  The resulting file should be directly include-able as a Postscript figure.
  If you don't have the PBM package installed, you could grab the binaries
  from our /usr/local/bin directories, or better install the package yourself.

Geomview hackers: it would be nice to have a window-image snapshot feature for
NeXT geomview like that on SGI.  If it could produce either .tiff or .ps files,
so much the better.

   - Stuart

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