How Computers Create Convincing Light and Shade in Graphics

Creating rich, lush computer-generated images is no mean feat, and one of the most fundamental aspects is light and shade. This video explains how programmers and designers tackle that crucial problem.

It's a question of rolling together all kinds of data—from information about lighting sources to material properties and geometry—to create a convincing effect. Listen to John Chapman explain how it's done. [Computerphile]

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DISCUSSION

this guy may actually know what he is talking about but he is TERRIBLE at explaining it in a way that is accessible and comprehendible by those who don't but are actually interested...and I say this as someone who does know exactly what he is talking about and has tried to explain it to my mom a few times...