Illustrative Membrane Clipping

Åsmund Birkeland, Stefan Bruckner, Andrea Brambilla, Ivan Viola
Illustrative Membrane Clipping
Computer Graphics Forum, 31(3):905-914, June 2012. [ Paper]
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Abstract

Clipping is a fast, common technique for resolving occlusions. It only requires simple interaction, is easily understandable, and thus has been very popular for volume exploration. However, a drawback of clipping is that the technique indiscriminately cuts through features. Illustrators, for example, consider the structures in the vicinity of the cut when visualizing complex spatial data and make sure that smaller structures near the clipping plane are kept in the image and not cut into fragments. In this paper we present a new technique, which combines the simple clipping interaction with automated selective feature preservation using an elastic membrane. In order to prevent cutting objects near the clipping plane, the deformable membrane uses underlying data properties to adjust itself to salient structures. To achieve this behaviour, we translate data attributes into a potential field which acts on the membrane, thus moving the problem of deformation into the soft-body dynamics domain. This allows us to exploit existing GPU-based physics libraries which achieve interactive frame rates. For manual adjustment, the user can insert additional potential fields, as well as pinning the membrane to interesting areas. We demonstrate that our method can act as a flexible and non-invasive replacement of traditional clipping planes.

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@article{Birkeland-2012-IMC,
  title =      "Illustrative Membrane Clipping",
  author =     "{\Aa}smund Birkeland and Stefan Bruckner and Andrea
               Brambilla and Ivan Viola",
  year =       "2012",
  abstract =   "Clipping is a fast, common technique for resolving
               occlusions. It only requires simple interaction, is easily
               understandable, and thus has been very popular for volume
               exploration. However, a drawback of clipping is that the
               technique indiscriminately cuts through features.
               Illustrators, for example, consider the structures in the
               vicinity of the cut when visualizing complex spatial data
               and make sure that smaller structures near the clipping
               plane are kept in the image and not cut into fragments. In
               this paper we present a new technique, which combines the
               simple clipping interaction with automated selective feature
               preservation using an elastic membrane. In order to prevent
               cutting objects near the clipping plane, the deformable
               membrane uses underlying data properties to adjust itself to
               salient structures. To achieve this behaviour, we translate
               data attributes into a potential field which acts on the
               membrane, thus moving the problem of deformation into the
               soft-body dynamics domain. This allows us to exploit
               existing GPU-based physics libraries which achieve
               interactive frame rates. For manual adjustment, the user can
               insert additional potential fields, as well as pinning the
               membrane to interesting areas. We demonstrate that our
               method can act as a flexible and non-invasive replacement of
               traditional clipping planes.",
  pages =      "905--914",
  month =      jun,
  number =     "3",
  note =       "presented at EuroVis 2012",
  event =      "EuroVis 2012",
  journal =    "Computer Graphics Forum",
  volume =     "31",
  location =   "Vienna, Austria",
  keywords =   "illustrative visualization, volume rendering, clipping",
  URL =        "http://www.cg.tuwien.ac.at/research/publications/2012/Birkeland-2012-IMC/",
}