[Edu-sig] Season of Lights!

Jason Cunliffe jasonic@nomadicsltd.com
Sat, 23 Dec 2000 19:44:02 -0500


Solstice/Seasons greeting to you all..

Since it is the time of lights, and wishing you all godspeed along the paths
towards beautiful ways to explore CP4E or CP4F [Computer programming for
FUN], there is a magical Python library for sculpting with light :



The Lightflow Rendering Interface is an object oriented programming
interface to synthetic rendering, which provides a common environment and
description language to treat light distribution in three dimensional
A major advantage of the system is that it has been made looking for
complete extensibility since its creation, providing the user with simple
and flexible extension mechanisms, which allow, among the others, procedural
definition of: surface and volumetric patterns and materials, new parametric
surface types, general lighting systems, camera lenses and output
The interface is made up by a set of language independent classes and
procedures that allow to define three dimensional scenes, so that an actual
interface implementation may be easily used both as an output device by
external programs and as a separate rendering tool by single individuals.
Currently, two versions of the Lightflow Rendering Interface are freely
available for non commercial uses: the Client Side C++ API, and a limited
Python wrapping that allows easy scene construction via scripting

Lightflow Rendering Tools: Client Side API - Python Module

Some breathtaking sample Lightflow images at:

And last but not __least__:
    Inspiring testimonial to the evidenct value of learning progamming young
by Lightflow's brilliant author, Jacopo Pantaleoni....


I am Jacopo Pantaleoni, my age is 21, and I live in Italy, where I study
Mathematics at the University of Padova.
I am interested in the field of Computer Graphics since I was 13, and I have
become an active developer about three years later, when my brother, expert
of computer languages (see www.elasticworld.org), taught me how to program.
I have always been fascinated by the world of science and mathematics, but
my mind focused on the latter only two years ago, when I choosed to
investigate this incredible field to join the needs of my already formed
interest in synthetic rendering.
My intention was to acquire a deeper knowledge of the concepts that I
already used in my very first rendering and modeling applications with the
constant help of my brother. Now that these concepts are clear enough, I am
starting to appreciate mathematics as a "stand-alone program", which is
becoming my main source of pleasure after Lightflow.
My preferred research fields are:

Computational Geometry, including :
Multi Dimensional Search Structures
Spatial Caching Schemes
Algebraic Variaties
Voronoi Diagrams

Real Analysis, including :
Function Approximation
Differential Equations


However, as I said previously, my main interests are growing around
Lightflow, which took me five years of intense development. This software is
born to satisfy my personal needs, providing all those functionalities that
the other commercial and free programs did not ever grouped into one
coherent solution.
With the time passing, I have started to treat Lightflow as a pure
development platform, a testbed for those futuristic features that once were
exclusive domain of the supercomputing world, such as global illumination,
volumetric rendering and hypertextures.
Recently this project has become a solid reality, next to the pubblication
of an article of mine on Computer Gazette, the most popular computer
graphics magazine in Italy, and next to the interest of Darkside, an
authorized Alias|Wavefront training center...

And now, The Show Must Go On...

Best wishes + enjoy!

- Jason
Jason CUNLIFFE = NOMADICS['Interactive Art and Technology']