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Geometric Tools for Computer Graphics (The Morgan Kaufmann Series in Computer Graphics) [Hardcover]

by Philip Schneider, David H. Eberly
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)

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Book Description

October 10, 2002 1558605940 978-1558605947 1
Do you spend too much time creating the building blocks of your graphics applications or finding and correcting errors? Geometric Tools for Computer Graphics is an extensive, conveniently organized collection of proven solutions to fundamental problems that you'd rather not solve over and over again, including building primitives, distance calculation, approximation, containment, decomposition, intersection determination, separation, and more.
If you have a mathematics degree, this book will save you time and trouble. If you don't, it will help you achieve things you may feel are out of your reach. Inside, each problem is clearly stated and diagrammed, and the fully detailed solutions are presented in easy-to-understand pseudocode. You also get the mathematics and geometry background needed to make optimal use of the solutions, as well as an abundance of reference material contained in a series of appendices.

Filled with robust, thoroughly tested solutions that will save you time and help you avoid costly errors.
Covers problems relevant for both 2D and 3D graphics programming.
Presents each problem and solution in stand-alone form allowing you the option of reading only those entries that matter to you.
Provides the math and geometry background you need to understand the solutions and put them to work.
Clearly diagrams each problem and presents solutions in easy-to-understand pseudocode.
Resources associated with the book are available at the companion Web site

Frequently Bought Together

Geometric Tools for Computer Graphics (The Morgan Kaufmann Series in Computer Graphics) + Real-Time Collision Detection (The Morgan Kaufmann Series in Interactive 3-D Technology)
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Editorial Reviews Review

Reinventing the wheel is a terrible waste of time, yet legions of computer programmers do exactly that every day. Geometric Tools for Computer Graphics gives the working graphics programmer a vast collection of programming examples, complex code snippets explained and ready to use. Each chapter is filled with more than just code examples--the explanations needed to understand why these examples work the way they do are given by authors with experience both in writing and in the field.

There is nothing here for the casual graphics programmer and everything for the serious 2-D and 3-D programmer. Thirteen chapters, three appendices, and a three-column index that spans over 30 pages cover everything about computer-graphic geometry, from the basics of using matrices and linear systems to intersecting 3-D objects.

The appendices alone are worth the price: "Numerical Methods," "Trigonometry," and "Basic Formulas for Geometric Primitives" are treasures filled with hard-core examples of the kind that can be put to use right out of the box. Less experienced programmers will find these to be invaluable references, but then there's the rest of the book--nearly 1,000 pages loaded with examples and theory, page after page of information written in a clear, concise voice.

Any hard-core graphics programmer will appreciate the value of the examples presented here, as well as the discussion of theory. After all, there's no need to waste time experimenting with code once the theory is known. Geometric Tools represents the best of both worlds: discussion of theory and code examples built on and culled from years of experience. --Mike Caputo


"An hour of a programmer's time often costs more than the price of a book. By this measure, you hold a volume potentially worth thousands of dollars. That it can be purchased for a fraction of this cost I consider a modern miracle. The amount of information crammed into this book is incredible." --Eric Haines

Product Details

  • Series: The Morgan Kaufmann Series in Computer Graphics
  • Hardcover: 1056 pages
  • Publisher: Morgan Kaufmann; 1 edition (October 10, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1558605940
  • ISBN-13: 978-1558605947
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 7.6 x 2.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #175,992 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
44 of 47 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars warning: first edition July 7, 2003
First of all, I commend the authors on a timely and valuable book. However, a word of caution: this book is full of errors. Every couple of pages I am noting in the margin: did they mean A instead of B? Having encountered so many errors, I am reading every formula with scepticism. The errors are serious enough that I have trouble recommending the book without reservations, but I know of no suitable alternative. I can only hope that the errors will be weeded out of future editions.
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Excellent information, marginal execution August 17, 2005
By Steve
First, the good:

-Once you learn everything in this book, you'll should be ~well~ prepared to start implementing a powerful 3D engine.

-The three-chapter introduction to linear algebra is, quite frankly, one of the most intuitive I've ever read. Mind you, I wouldn't suggest that anyone studying linear algebra go out of their way to buy this book (since those three chapters are a small fraction of the book). However, anyone getting their first taste of linear algebra from this book should consider themselves fortunate to have such a lucid, concrete introduction to the subject. (Granted, you'll need some 'mathematical maturity' to understand it, but it should be easier to grasp than your average linear algebra text.)

And then, the bad:

-Errors galore. Fortunately, you can get a list of corrections from the book's web site, though if you print it out you may be a bit put off by the fact that it's some 25 pages. (To be fair, however, it has all corrections listed chronologically in order they were identified, then listed again by page number, so there's really only about 12 pages of corrections.) If you happen to have the second edition of this book, then you'll only have about 5 pages of corrections.

-Some of those corrections pretty much just scrap an explanation from the book and start over....which is fine, aside from having to read things like "Cross(Dot(u,v) * w))" which isn't particularly intuitive, and the fact that some of these new explanations seem to need corrections of their own (like those that appear to confuse w-parallel with w-perp, and so on).

-It seems a bit arrogant of the authors to make the occasional appeal to things that the "astute reader" may have noticed.
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32 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An incredible amount of material in a single book November 17, 2002
This book provides a solid grounding in vectors and matrices, then covers a wide range of 2D and 3D geometric algorithms, such as object/object distance and intersection, boolean operations, BSP trees, convex hulls, and more. It is a comprehensive guide, giving relevant theory, methods, and working code fragments. It's an incredible value for the amount of material it covers. I think it is a must-have for computer graphics professionals (and others in related fields). In the interest of full disclosure, I wrote the Foreword to this book, which I did because I was pleased with how good it is.
Visit Dave Eberly's "Magic Software" site for more about the book's contents.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Coordinate free! April 5, 2005
This is the first book I found that does an incredible job of covering vector geometry from a coordinate free approach. The first 1/4 of the book covers the basics with an excellent mathematical approach. The rest of the book show excellent examples of just about any type of intersection and collision of geometry; OBB, sphere, cones, polygons etc.... The is great for doing things like Frustum culling and the like. The only weird thing was it is missing Eberly's discussion on sphere/cone intersection; but no matter you can get it at the website.

I highly recommend this book for those that want to understand the core of 3D graphics from a coordinate free approach. I am very happy I purchased the book. It has inspired me to purchase a clifford algebra book to better understand coord-free algebra.

If you are simply looking for code and are not interested in the mathematical reasoning then you problably should look elsewhere. This book is for those who want to get a better understanding of core 3D graphics from a very friendly approach.

I also noticed that those who rated this book with few stars where simply looking for something quick. Face it 3D graphics and math go hand in hand. Otherwise you are just kidding yourself.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A real Treasure, May 3, 2003
By A Customer
I just got this book about a week ago and I haven't been able to put it down since. A great resource, a real treasure full of well presented gems. A large number of topics are well presented with mathematical depth that enables you to understand the code. The code is very well written and concise. Truly a great book and a pleasure to read. I hope to see more books like this in the future. I am interested in medical imaging applications and I know I will be using this book for a long time to come. In addition, the authors have a site ... that presents the code and additional very valuable materials.
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