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kiddxin

Indoor and outdoor environment

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Hello All, What is the difference between the indoor and outdoor environment? Seems the methods to render the indoor and outdoor environment are totally different. Is there any accurate definition of what is indoor environment and what is outdoor environment? And what makes them different? Thank you so much. Best Regards, Kidd

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In an outdoor environment you can see off into the distance, whereas an indoor environment restricts your view to that of the room your in (and the rooms through doors, windows, etc). In other words, in an indoor environment there is far more potential for culling invisible geometry, which in turn allows for the geometry to be more detailed than for an outdoor environment.

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Thanks joanusdmentia. This is what I thought before. But after reading some documents about the terrain. It gave me the idea that the outdoor environment is used to deal with terrain specificly. So I searched the internet for the accurate definition about indoor and outdoor environment and at last decide to post a thread to ask help from all the experts. :) Thank you so much

Best regards,
Kidd

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Guest Anonymous Poster
outdoor usually has a skybox/skydome

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Guest Anonymous Poster
outdoor is more often a regular grid (heightmap) and usually no surface formations that arch over or vertical surfaces.

indoors usually use point sources for lighting where outdoor uses a single directional light



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I think the main difference between outdoor rendering and indoor rendering is the sheer distance that you can usually see to in the outdoors vs. the indoors.

As was stated, indoors, your view distance is limited by walls and doors, etc. So you can't see terribly far. But outdoors, you can see to the horizon (or, in a more limited engine, to the fog). Thus, in outdoor rendering it's much more important to handle things like LOD (Level-of-detail) rendering on everything. For instance, most terrain algorithms are written such that the amount of detail on the mountains in the distance is much lower than the detail of the hill you're standing on, by reducing polygon count, texture quality, or (recently) shader quality.

Indoors, level of detail rendering isn't as crucial, but it could still certainly be handy, depending on the scale of your indoor areas.

In terms of dividing up the scenes (so that you can quickly eliminate large amounts of off-screen geometry), historically the outdoors have used a quadtree or octree and indoors have used BSP trees or portals. Indoor areas are contained, so you know that you won't be seeing OUT of this room unless you look through one of the room's exits (doors and windows). As such, you can be fairly exact about what gets drawn and what doesn't...many BSP renderers can actually eliminate ALL hidden geometry.

But outdoors, you don't always have that type of restriction. You're not "in" something, so it becomes much harder to determine exactly what is visible or not. So the outdoor culling algorithms tend to be more rough in nature. Quadtrees/Octrees are most common, as I said, and these basically quickly eliminate things outside of the frustum. Some "newer" methods are being used, such as occlusion maps and horizon culling, but I don't have alot of experience with them, so I can't tell you exactly what they do.

Anyway, hope that helps :)


Josh

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