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Speeding up 3D rotation

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  • Subject: [mg122059] Speeding up 3D rotation
  • From: Ralph Dratman <ralph.dratman at>
  • Date: Tue, 11 Oct 2011 04:24:07 -0400 (EDT)
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I am working with a lot of 3D arrays for which Mathematica's real-time
rotation is very useful. I have been rendering the arrays into 3D
using colored cuboids. With careful setup of spacing between the
cuboids, along with some transparency and the rotation feature, I can
see inside the 3D structure reasonably well.

In general am happy with these capabilities, but things are starting
to get slow and worse, unreliable. The largest size array I have tried
so far is 24x24x24. The initial rendering time for the image is
tolerable, but at that size the rotation is too sluggish to be really
useful. Sometimes Mathematica (or my computer) seems to get lost
trying to do all that work, and I often have to force-quit the
program, obviously not a good situation when one is concentrating on
studying something complex.

I would like to be able to work with up to about 100x100x100 voxels,
but maybe that is not feasible yet.

I am working on a Mac Mini now, but I also have a Dell running Windows
XP that I could try, as well as an x86 Linux system. I can spend a few
hundred dollars to put a new graphics card into one of the computers,
if that would help, but a multi-thousand-dollar graphics investment is
not in my future.

Any advice or links would be much appreciated.

Thank you.

Ralph Dratman

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