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After reading this chapter, you'll be able to do the following: Understand what texture mapping can add to your scene Specify a texture image Control how a texture image is filtered as it's applied to a fragment Create and manage texture images in texture objects and, if available, control a high-performance working set of those texture objects Specify how the color values in the image combine with those of the fragment to which it's being applied Supply texture coordinates to indicate how the texture image should be aligned to the objects in your scene Use automatic texture coordinate generation to produce effects like contour maps and environment maps So far, every geometric primitive has been drawn as either a solid color or smoothly shaded between the colors at its vertices - that is, they've been drawn without texture mapping.
If you want to draw a large brick wall without texture mapping, for example, each brick must be drawn as a separate polygon. Without texturing, a large flat wall - which is really a single rectangle - might require thousands of individual bricks, and even then the bricks may appear too smooth and regular to be realistic.
Texture mapping allows you to glue an image of a brick wall obtained, perhaps, by scanning in a photograph of a real wall to a polygon and to draw the entire wall as a single polygon.
Texture mapping ensures that all the right things happen as the polygon is transformed and rendered. For example, when the wall is viewed in perspective, the bricks may appear smaller as the wall gets farther from the viewpoint.
Other uses for texture mapping include depicting vegetation on large polygons representing the ground in flight simulation; wallpaper patterns; and textures that make polygons look like natural substances such as marble, wood, or cloth.
The possibilities are endless. Although it's most natural to think of applying textures to polygons, textures can be applied to all primitives - points, lines, polygons, bitmaps, and images. Because there are so many possibilities, texture mapping is a fairly large, complex subject, and you must make several programming choices when using it.
For instance, you can map textures to surfaces made of a set of polygons or to curved surfaces, and you can repeat a texture in one or both directions to cover the surface. A texture can even be one-dimensional. In addition, you can automatically map a texture onto an object in such a way that the texture indicates contours or other properties of the item being viewed.
Shiny objects can be textured so that they appear to be in the center of a room or other environment, reflecting the surroundings off their surfaces.
Finally, a texture can be applied to a surface in different ways. It can be painted on directly like a decal placed on a surfaceused to modulate the color the surface would have been painted otherwise, or used to blend a texture color with the surface color.
If this is your first exposure to texture mapping, you might find that the discussion in this chapter moves fairly quickly. Addison-Wesley Publishing Company, Textures are simply rectangular arrays of data - for example, color data, luminance data, or color and alpha data.
The individual values in a texture array are often called texels.
What makes texture mapping tricky is that a rectangular texture can be mapped to nonrectangular regions, and this must be done in a reasonable way. Figure illustrates the texture-mapping process. The left side of the figure represents the entire texture, and the black outline represents a quadrilateral shape whose corners are mapped to those spots on the texture.
When the quadrilateral is displayed on the screen, it might be distorted by applying various transformations - rotations, translations, scaling, and projections.
The right side of the figure shows how the texture-mapped quadrilateral might appear on your screen after these transformations. Note that this quadrilateral is concave and might not be rendered correctly by OpenGL without prior tessellation. See Chapter 11 for more information about tessellating polygons.
Texture-Mapping Process Notice how the texture is distorted to match the distortion of the quadrilateral. In this case, it's stretched in the x direction and compressed in the y direction; there's a bit of rotation and shearing going on as well. Depending on the texture size, the quadrilateral's distortion, and the size of the screen image, some of the texels might be mapped to more than one fragment, and some fragments might be covered by multiple texels.
For example, if many texels correspond to a fragment, they're averaged down to fit; if texel boundaries fall across fragment boundaries, a weighted average of the applicable texels is performed. Because of these calculations, texturing is computationally expensive, which is why many specialized graphics systems include hardware support for texture mapping.
An application may establish texture objects, with each texture object representing a single texture and possible associated mipmaps. Some implementations of OpenGL can support a special working set of texture objects that have better performance than texture objects outside the working set.A Computer Science portal for geeks.
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