Parallax occlusion mapping

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Parallax occlusion mapping (POM) is an enhancement of the parallax mapping technique. Parallax occlusion mapping is used to procedurally create 3D definition in textured surfaces, using a displacement map (similar to a topography map) instead of through the generation of new geometry.[1] This allows developers of 3D rendering applications to add 3D complexity in textures, which correctly change relative to perspective and with self occlusion in real time (self-shadowing is additionally possible), without sacrificing the processor cycles required to create the same effect with geometry calculations.[2]

Parallax occlusion mapping was first published in 2004 by Zoe Brawley and Natalya Tatarchuk in ShaderX3.[1] Natalya Tatarchuk conducted presentations of the technology at SIGGRAPH in 2005.[3] It was used in ATI's 'Toy Shop Demo' to showcase the Radeon X1800's Ultra-Threaded SM 3.0 technology.[4] It is used in video games and rendering engines such as Unigine,[5] CryEngine 2,[6] and CryEngine 3.[7] It has also been used to create stereoscopic images from single images.[8]

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