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From: Michael Hunter
Subject: The Rules
Date: 10 Jun 2009 13:40:00
Message: <web.4a2fef719ae2988bd7fbc1230@news.povray.org>
It is wonderful that the IRTC has been around since the days when spheres and
cubes on checkered planes was considered advanced 3D! But the old rules that
were meant to keep the discussion focused on tools and techniques used in 3D
have inadvertently restricted that very conversation. I would like to urge you
to allow a review of these rules to ensure that the overall mission is an
investigation of 3D without restrictions on the technologies and methodologies
used because these aspects of 3D are continually evolving.

No one could have predicted a decade ago that 3D images and animations would be


they created water. It was a multi-pass operation where refractions,
reflections, specular highlights and so on were rendered independently and then
merged into the final animation. This allows a more efficient workflow and more
flexibility but it requires more planning and is often times more complex.

I think there is a lot to discuss and consider related to modern methodologies.

our group if we restrict images to only what can be rendered simultaneously.
More than anyone else POV-Ray-ers could benefit by a more open methodology
allowing them to make essentially real-time adjustments to their scenes much of

minded as possible to any animation or image that is 3D regardless of how it
was assembled so the conversation can be about that methodology and new
techniques that have yet to be invented.


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From: Hildur K 
Subject: Re: The Rules
Date: 10 Jun 2009 15:10:00
Message: <web.4a3004ab2f2043cd421830f90@news.povray.org>

to squeeze more out of their software and hardware. And why spend three weeks
waiting on a render if you can do something to speed up things?

Povers never seem to tire of waiting, even brag about it, when in reality they




Some otherwise slow effects can easily be achieved with post processing. Like
focal blur for instance. It slows down render dramatically. I admit I never
used it in Povray because it takes too long.


more important to be able to render in passes and assemble in another program,
to make even more impressive images in Povray.

In reality I can render an image in passes and assemble it in another software,
and nobody would ever know the difference. So why make rules which can easily

on several occasions and people have gotten away with it.

Not me though, I always followed the rules of course :-) ,but I can think of
several ways of "cheating" without being caught. So can anybody else.


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From: Jim Henderson
Subject: Re: The Rules
Date: 10 Jun 2009 15:15:26
Message: <4a30064e$1@news.povray.org>
On Wed, 10 Jun 2009 13:38:06 -0400, Michael Hunter wrote:

> I’d like to urge the IRTC to be as open minded as possible to any
> animation or image that is 3D regardless of how it was assembled so the
> conversation can be about that methodology and new techniques that have
> yet to be invented.

I may be remembering incorrectly, but I seem to remember that IRTC wasn't 
so much about POV-Ray but rather was about Ray Tracing.  I believe that's 
the reason why the competition isn't called the "Internet POV-Ray 
Competition", but rather the "Internet Ray Tracing Competition".

It just happened that POV-Ray was one of the best tools available, so 
submissions tended to use it.

Jim


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From: Thomas "Punk-t" Grahl
Subject: Re: The Rules
Date: 10 Jun 2009 18:36:06
Message: <4a303556$1@news.povray.org>
Jim Henderson schrieb:
> On Wed, 10 Jun 2009 13:38:06 -0400, Michael Hunter wrote:
...
> 
> It just happened that POV-Ray was one of the best tools available, so 
> submissions tended to use it.
> 
> Jim

There may be another reason for a main usage of POV-Ray: The rules of 
IRTC prefer(ed? - at least in the past) the more or less "free 
software". Keeping that in mind POV-Ray was one of only few tools to do 
ray tracing at all.

In my opinion it's not the worst idea to empower such free and/or open 
source tools by paying a little higher degree of respect to such 
submissions. The final benefit is on all that hobby nad spare time ray 
tracers out there, like me.

Though, as a negatve side effect you will bring some tecknologies or 
methologies used by closed source and licensed software more or less 
down, because they are restricted to patents.

IRTC shall be open for everyone and any institution, but its main target 
group should be the volunteer and hobby ray tracer.

Punk-T


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From: Jim Henderson
Subject: Re: The Rules
Date: 10 Jun 2009 18:51:38
Message: <4a3038fa$1@news.povray.org>
On Thu, 11 Jun 2009 00:36:02 +0200, Thomas \"Punk-t\" Grahl wrote:

> There may be another reason for a main usage of POV-Ray: The rules of
> IRTC prefer(ed? - at least in the past) the more or less "free
> software". Keeping that in mind POV-Ray was one of only few tools to do
> ray tracing at all.

True.  And I recall that the rules did prefer freely available software 
(as compared to commercial software) for submissions.

But that also didn't mean you couldn't use modeling software like Moray 
(though those submissions probably were less likely to win since it 
wasn't about the coding - I think ultimately most considered IRTC to be a 
coding contest).

> Though, as a negatve side effect you will bring some tecknologies or
> methologies used by closed source and licensed software more or less
> down, because they are restricted to patents.

I don't think patents are the biggest problem there, or even really a 
major concern.  It's probably more that if you're using commercial-grade 
rendering software, you have access to more tools.  It's like putting me  
in a ring with a world champion sumo wrestler and believing that there's 
a chance I might win.

> IRTC shall be open for everyone and any institution, but its main target
> group should be the volunteer and hobby ray tracer.

Maybe there needs to be some self-regulated leveling - a beginner, 
intermediate, advanced, and professional breakdown, perhaps?

Jim


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From: Michael Hunter
Subject: Re: The Rules
Date: 11 Jun 2009 13:25:01
Message: <web.4a313d0c2f2043cdd7fbc1230@news.povray.org>

more directed to what constitutes an acceptable entry not how submissions
should be judged.

If the regulations are too restricting we will most certainly loose the
opportunity to learn from advanced users as well as limit the creative range of
everyone.

I believe the rules were forged in a time when 3D was new and not very well
developed. There are three areas that have developed beyond our wildest dreams:

ways of working with 3D. Why should it be illegal to glue together side by side
two renderings like a before and after? Why should text be banned except when it



point is we stand to miss out if we are not receptive to all forms 3D comes in.

Please note that the examples I have given above can be done in ANY 3D
application and on any PC (or Mac or Unix or Linex) capable of rendering. Also

the lord and master of your work. And every school of thought I think should be
equally welcomed.

Trying to create a level playing field for voting purposes, as noble and yet

explain why I think this is an impossible goal but in a different thread.


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From: Chambers
Subject: Re: The Rules
Date: 11 Jun 2009 22:37:32
Message: <4a31bf6c@news.povray.org>
Michael Hunter wrote:
> ways of working with 3D. Why should it be illegal to glue together side by side
> two renderings like a before and after?

Mainly because this is a raytracing competition and not an image 
composition, or even general image, competition.  There are other forums 
where user may show off their great Maya modeling or Photoshop skills 
(even more so than when the rules were first conceived).  This 
competition was originally envisioned as the premier forum for scenes 
which are entirely raytraced.

-- 
Chambers


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From: Hildur K 
Subject: Re: The Rules
Date: 12 Jun 2009 10:00:00
Message: <web.4a325e2d2f2043cd421830f90@news.povray.org>

this a ideal time and opportunity to review the IRTC rules? Because 10+ years
is really a long time in the history of computer generated imaging.

And if this is a fact, that people claim, that the IRTC was meant to be for
raytracing only, why are images that were created in other type of renderers
being accepted? Why have they on several occasions won the competition?

why would you want to vote down a wonderful computer generated image, simply



some professional software? That is real nonsense.

In the IRTC, what people vote for is artistic, technical and concept category.
The first and the last have nothing to do with raytracing skills at all. They
are all about the quality of the image and not about how it was generated. They
are about the artist, not the method.

The technical category can possibly have something to do with raytracing, but
not necessarily, as the results often show, when entries made in all sorts of
3D software, commercial or not, have been voted to a winning place. So overall
quality seems to weight more than the actual practical skills.

So maybe the ideology some people seem to think is behind the IRTC, is not
really there, and perhaps never was.

I have had the impression that here we have two types of people, the more
technically inclined and the more artistically inclined. And then there are a
few who seem to be able to embody both.

Maybe this is all basically a question about which group is the dominating? The
coders perhaps want this competition to be about making wonderful images in

restrained by technical issues. And both groups seem to be sort of intolerant
about each other, while they should be supporting each other.

The coders can inspire and come up with innovative solutions, helping others
find the means to create particular effects. The artists bring their
inspiration and challenge everybody to bring up the quality of the content.
Both sides badly need each other to learn from.

This is really what makes the IRTC unique. Having people claiming this is for
Povers only, is a step backward and would make the IRTC one sided and biased.
Even boring. Which is not very inspirational.

If anybody is in doubt, they can check for themselves and see how many entries
are really made by code only in Povray without the aid of a modeller, and how
many are not, and check which of those entries occupy the top positions.


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From: Jim Henderson
Subject: Re: The Rules
Date: 12 Jun 2009 11:22:29
Message: <4a3272b5$1@news.povray.org>
On Thu, 11 Jun 2009 13:21:16 -0400, Michael Hunter wrote:

> I’m afraid this discussion has driven off to a different topic. My
> concern was more directed to what constitutes an acceptable entry not
> how submissions should be judged.

Well, perhaps a little bit, but the two are interrelated - something 
that's deemed an acceptable entry needs to meet a certain minimum set of 
criteria based on what the judging criteria are.

That said, yeah, the breakdown by skill level I suggested does go a bit 
farther off topic than just that, and would better be discussed in 
another thread.

Jim


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From: Michael Hunter
Subject: Re: The Rules
Date: 12 Jun 2009 13:50:00
Message: <web.4a3294db2f2043cdd7fbc1230@news.povray.org>
I think this heated debate shows not just how strongly people feel about the
IRTC but also how varied the views are about the purpose of the organization.
No matter what happens there will always be people engaged in this group for
different reasons. I think I agree with Hildur that this is a positive aspect
though I wish people were less angry.



share ideas and learn from each other. I at least try hard to explain what I

helps them with whatever they are trying to do. My work may not be relevant to
everyone but I hope I can help some people. This is what I think is the spirit
of the IRTC.

I get the impression that I have given off the wrong signals again. Beyond the
spirit of friendly competition there are two subjects that we are called upon
to address: The current topic of course but also an on-going topic of how to
make 3D. I never meant to side tract the IRTC into an image processing
competition or a competition of who can buy the most expensive software.
Nothing that I have said in any way should be or could reasonably be considered
to be against any software including POV-Ray or a subversion of the group away
from the making of 3D. Moreover I do not want anyone to think that I am in any
way looking down on hobbyist or people who choose not to buy 3D modeling
software (I believe this is a choice and not an economic matter for most people
even today).

Before you rush to judge me (rather than my work) you should know a bit about


the group. I decided that I wanted to work more with 3D. So I had to choose
what tools I was going to master. I chose to buy what I believed to be the


with it then your doing 3D more and paying for it as you go. So far I have just
barely recouped my investment. To be fair 3D, no matter how you do it, requires
years of practice and trial and error to master it. It took me a while to learn
3D Studio Max and now that I think I have some skill I hope to do this
full-time. Somehow. I am the CEO of Interactive Technologies, Inc. I am also

also a life-long artist. I studied it in school and got an MFA in New York. My
personal goal is to make the best art I can and to help people with their art
or at least make it less mysterious for average people. Hate me if you want but


But now I am running off the subject at hand. What do you want to be accepted
into the competition? Do you want to limit it to people who are hobbyists? Or


question is how restrictive should the rules be and that seems to be related to
what are we trying to work-out as a group. I hope you see the reward of being
part of the IRTC to be what you learn rather than what you win. Could we have
more friendly comments about this? I think we need to establish some core
values we all agree to before drafting a minimum requirements document. It is a
sticky business we have gotten ourselves into but we have to face this.


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