Re: VisAD library update

Hi All-

Tom Whittaker wrote:
> The VisAD library has been updated.  The changes since the last update
> in Feb, 2006, are listed below.  I apologize for the length of time
> between updates -- I had computer hardware and software issues that
> kept getting in the way...

I just wanted to point out a few of the new features in this
latest release that might be of interest (so you don't have
to decipher the CVS changelog that Tom sent):

- The animation rendering has been changed.  Each scene in
the animation is rendered to the screen as it is created. This
is similar to the behavior of AnimationRendererJ3D.  You no
longer have to wait for the entire set of scenes to be generated
before something shows up on the screen.

- The streamline code was revamped to produce more realistic
streamlines.  What you should see is a denser set of streamlines
and more accuracy in calm regions.  You can control the density
of the streamlines through methods in the FlowControl:

setStreamlineDensity(float density)
setStepFactor(float stepFactor)

- transparency now works for color filled contours and
you can draw labels on color filled contours.

- Many improvements were made in the performance of contour
rendering, especially for fine grids.  There is still some
ongoing work in this area but you should notice an increase
in speed and a drop in the memory consumption.

- many changes were made to reduce memory consumption in the
Shadow* classes (used for rendering) and the CoordinateSystem
classes.  On point to note on this is that the contract for
the toReference/fromReference methods in CoordinateSystem
has always been that the array passed in may be transformed in place and
returned, not that a new array is always created.  So, if you were
previously assuming that the input array would not be touched
when running through toReference/fromReference methods, you
may notice some problems with the new visad.jar.  In some
cases, arrays are now transformed in place which saves on
memory consumption.

Thanks to Tom Rink for implementing most of the above.

Please let us know (via the list) if you find any problems
with the new visad.jar.

Don Murray
Don Murray                               UCAR Unidata Program
dmurray@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx                        P.O. Box 3000
(303) 497-8628                              Boulder, CO 80307

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