GPU-based large-scale visualization

Markus Hadwiger, Jens Krueger, Johanna Beyer, Stefan Bruckner

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Recent advances in image and volume acquisition as well as computational advances in simulation have led to an explosion of the amount of data that must be visualized and analyzed. Modern techniques combine the parallel processing power of GPUs with out-of-core methods and data streaming to enable the interactive visualization of giga- and terabytes of image and volume data. A major enabler for interactivity is making both the computational and the visualization effort proportional to the amount of data that is actually visible on screen, decoupling it from the full data size. This leads to powerful display-aware multi-resolution techniques that enable the visualization of data of almost arbitrary size. The course consists of two major parts: An introductory part that progresses from fundamentals to modern techniques, and a more advanced part that discusses details of ray-guided volume rendering, novel data structures for display-aware visualization and processing, and the remote visualization of large online data collections. You will learn how to develop efficient GPU data structures and large-scale visualizations, implement out-of-core strategies and concepts such as virtual texturing that have only been employed recently, as well as how to use modern multi-resolution representations. These approaches reduce the GPU memory requirements of extremely large data to a working set size that fits into current GPUs. You will learn how to perform ray-casting of volume data of almost arbitrary size and how to render and process gigapixel images using scalable, display-aware techniques. We will describe custom virtual texturing architectures as well as recent hardware developments in this area. We will also describe client/server systems for distributed visualization, on-demand data processing and streaming, and remote visualization. We will describe implementations using OpenGL as well as CUDA, exploiting parallelism on GPUs combined with additional asynchronous processing and data streaming on CPUs.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationSIGGRAPH Asia 2013 Courses on - SA '13
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery (ACM)
ISBN (Print)9781450326315
StatePublished - Nov 12 2013


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