Simple and Robust Mutation Strategy for Metropolis Light Transport Algorithm

Csaba Kelemen, László Szirmay-Kalos
Simple and Robust Mutation Strategy for Metropolis Light Transport Algorithm
TR-186-2-01-18, July 2001 [paper]

Information

Abstract

The paper presents a new mutation strategy for the Metropolis light transport algorithm, which works in the space of uniform random numbers used to build up paths. Thus instead of mutating directly in the path space, mutations are realized in the infinite dimensional unit cube of pseudo-random numbers and these points are transformed to the path space according to BRDF sampling, light source sampling and Russian roulette. This transformation makes the integrand and the importance function flatter and thus increases the acceptance probability of the new samples in the Metropolis algorithm. Higher acceptance ratio, in turn, reduces the correlation of the samples, which increases the speed of convergence. When mutations are calculated, a new random point is selected usually in the neighborhood of the previous one, but according to our proposition called ``large steps'', sometimes an independent point is obtained. Large steps greatly reduce the start-up bias and guarantee the ergodicity of the process. Due to the fact that some samples are generated independently of the previous sample, this method can also be considered as a combination of the Metropolis algorithm with a classical random walk. Metropolis light transport is good in rendering bright image areas but poor in rendering dark sections since it allocates samples proportionally to the pixel luminance. Conventional random walks, on the other hand, have the same performace everywhere, thus they are poorer than Metropolis method in bright areas, but are better at dark sections. In order to keep the merits of both approaches, we use multiple importance sampling to combine their results, that is, the combined method will be as good at bright regions as Metropolis and at dark regions as random walks. The resulting scheme is robust, efficient, but most importantly, is easy to implement and to combine with an available random-walk algorithm.

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BibTeX

@techreport{Szirmay-2001-METR,
  title =      "Simple and Robust Mutation Strategy for Metropolis Light
               Transport Algorithm",
  author =     "Csaba Kelemen and L{'a}szl{'o} Szirmay-Kalos",
  year =       "2001",
  abstract =   "The paper presents a new mutation strategy for the
               Metropolis light transport algorithm, which works in the
               space of uniform random numbers used to build up paths. Thus
               instead of mutating directly in the path space, mutations
               are realized in the infinite dimensional unit cube of
               pseudo-random numbers and these points are transformed to
               the path space according to BRDF sampling, light source
               sampling and Russian roulette. This transformation makes the
               integrand and the importance function flatter and thus
               increases the acceptance probability of the new samples in
               the Metropolis algorithm. Higher acceptance ratio, in turn,
               reduces the correlation of the samples, which increases the
               speed of convergence. When mutations are calculated, a new
               random point is selected usually in the neighborhood of the
               previous one, but according to our proposition called
               ``large steps'', sometimes an independent point is obtained.
               Large steps greatly reduce the start-up bias and guarantee
               the ergodicity of the process. Due to the fact that some
               samples are generated independently of the previous sample,
               this method can also be considered as a combination of the
               Metropolis algorithm with a classical random walk.
               Metropolis light transport is good in rendering bright image
               areas but poor in rendering dark sections since it allocates
               samples proportionally to the pixel luminance. Conventional
               random walks, on the other hand, have the same performace
               everywhere, thus they are poorer than Metropolis method in
               bright areas, but are better at dark sections. In order to
               keep the merits of both approaches, we use multiple
               importance sampling to combine their results, that is, the
               combined method will be as good at bright regions as
               Metropolis and at dark regions as random walks. The
               resulting scheme is robust, efficient, but most importantly,
                                 is easy to implement and to combine with
               an available random-walk algorithm.",
  month =      jul,
  number =     "TR-186-2-01-18",
  address =    "Favoritenstrasse 9-11/186, A-1040 Vienna, Austria",
  institution = "Institute of Computer Graphics and Algorithms, Vienna
               University of Technology",
  note =       "human contact: technical-report@cg.tuwien.ac.at",
  keywords =   "rendering equation, Monte-Carlo integration, importance
               sampling, Metropolis sampling",
  URL =        "https://www.cg.tuwien.ac.at/research/publications/2001/Szirmay-2001-METR/",
}