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normal map for dummies

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Hi! I know how to make normal map thanks to the plug'in for photoshop from nVidia. But I would know how to make my own normal maps thanks to heightmap in gray scale. nVidia in its cg tutorial book gave one formula but it seems to not provide the same results as its plug'in... So can anyone help me and tell me how to perform normal map??? (I just want to make some dot3 bump mapping!!)

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This might not be an answer to your question, but... If you don't have photoshop, you can use GIMP. It's free, cross-platform, and open-source. And there is a function that will generate normal maps for you.

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Well, have you checked out the errata on the nVidia book?

There was an error in that formula, check out the errata for page 203.

You can also code a pixel shader that will encode a model's normals as colors (using the normals-to-colors equation), and save a screenshot of the result, which you can then use as the normal map.

Hope it helped.

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In fact I did use the nVidia formula but it seems not to be the correct formula or not the entire formula. I saw on a thread that there a core matrix to create my filter to compute my normal map.
So do you know a tutorial about normal map from heightmap. Something which different from the nVidia tutorial book?? (which is a great book)!

Thanks for the errata in the book. I did find that there was an error and I corrected them.
Thanks for your help!!

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