A bunch of resources are available for 2 dimensional cellular automata (CA). I had an idea to create (easy) and visualize (hard) 3 dimensional CAs. For visualization I tried volume visualization methods. I used the oldskool fire effect for these examples.

First attempt was created with Graphoscope. It uses ray casting, and box cells, and is written on CPU. It is quite slow, but this is still the most promising-looking one, so I will try to make it faster using the GPU.

Anim GIF, and some glitches (find ca3_x.gif files)

The images with grey background were created using the GPU (OpenGL).

I tried with points representing the cells. First image with exact locations, has a Moiré effect. Second image: random locations. It does not really give depth impression, so I tried with surface points instead of volume points -> edge detection. It was not good, I suspect a program defect.


With bigger points (POINT_SMOOTH does not work in modern OpenGL, duh) and alpha blending. Still not better than the first one. And in the second image shows a defect I am not sure right now what it is exactly.

With depth test and no blending :)

Last modification: 2016 jan 17