General Questions about VisAD


I have som questions about the capabilities of VisAD as a visualization

First let me introduce my self. My name is Gunnar Sletta, I am a student at
the University of Oslo, Norway, and I have reasently started working on my
master degree.
Visualization of datasets obtained by Parallel simulation. The goal is to
analyse the problems involved and to develop a toolkit, that can be used to
visualize these data. I have decided to implement the software using Java3D,
since I java offers much support on issues as multithreading, networking and
UI, and I am comfortable with the language in general. Java3D also has
proved nice performance (at least what I have seen so far).

The data I am to visualize are generated most likely generated by Diffpack
(, a PDE solving library with focus on finite element grids.
These are irregular grids, where cells can be of different types within one
grid. From what I could read in the IrregularxDSet, only supports triangular
shapes. Is it possible to represent grid of varying celltype either via a
new Set subclass or something I have not yet come across.

The datasets are most likely huge, so I was wondering how VisAD and Java3D
works when one starts to push the hardware limits. I noticed from the that animations are very fast, and I assume it is
because all the geometry is loaded into graphics memory before the animation
is started. How does this work when the geometry exceeds the memory on the
graphics board.

I wish to have an implementation of all the basic algorithms available in my
toolkit when I finnish. Contours, slicing, streamlines, etc. I the mailing
list archive I saw several suggestions how to make many of them using
MathTypes. Will/Has this been done anywhere.

Have I understood the licence correct if any one can make extensions to the
VisAD software. I can use the classes I need from the library and implement
my own where necessary.

Any comments are greatly appreciated.


Gunnar Sletta - gunnarsl@xxxxxxxxxx