Commit 1f5384a2 authored by Laurent Belcour's avatar Laurent Belcour
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Changing the main document entry to be better looking

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ALTA is a software library to analyse, fit and understand BRDFs. It
provides a set of command line softwares to fit measured data to analytical
forms, new tools to understand models and data.
This package provide C++ code to analyze BRDF, fit measured data to
analytical formulation, etc. It is decomposed in three components:
<li><em>\ref core</em>: a set of classes providing interfaces to BRDFs,
data type and fitting algorithms. All the code using this library should
rely on this part.</li>
<li><em>\ref plugins</em>: a set of plugins providing fitting algorithms
for rational BRDFs, non-linear BRDFs, etc.</li>
<li><em>\ref softs</em>: a set of tools to fit data, convert data,
export fitting to plots, etc.</li>
Three types of plugins are availables:
<li><em>\ref data</em> plugins allow to load BRDF measurements files.
<li><em>\ref function</em> plugins provide BRDF representations.</li>
<li><em>\ref fitter</em> plugins provide fitting algorithms.</li>
<h2>Obtain sources</h2>
forms, tools to understand models and data.
<br /><br />
<h2>Download and install</h2>
<h3>Obtain sources</h3>
To access the sources of ALTA, you can clone the mercurial repository:
hg clone
You can build ALTA using either QMake or Scons. To start, we advise to use
Scons as it is lightweight and only requires Python to be installed (ALTA
uses Python for its high level scripting mechanism). To build using scons,
go to the root directory of ALTA and type:
scons -i
This should obtain some of ALTA's dependencies (such as Eigen) and compile the
main package of the library (i.e. the core, the command line tools, and some
To use QMake, or for a more detailed view of ALTA's building scripts and
dependencies, please refer to \ref install.
<br /><br />
<h2>How to use it</h2>
After compiling the different command line tools and associated plugins,
go to the sources directory and launch this command line (for Linux users only):
./build/data2brdf --input ../data/1d/Kirby.dat --output Kirby.brdf --fitter ./build/
Tada ! You have produced your first BRDF fit.
The <i>data2brdf</i> is one of many \a commands available in ALTA. It
allows to perform a fitting procedure by converting a \ref data object into a
brdf object (also named \ref function).
To convert this brdf file (in ALTA \ref format), you will need another command:
./build/brdf2brdf --input Kirby.brdf --output Kirby.m --export matlab
<i>brdf2brdf</i> converts an ALTA brdf file into another format such as
Matlab m file, C++ code, or BRDF Explorer shader. Note that this tool cannot
convert to another ALTA file (e.g. converting a Blinn lobe to a Beckmann
<br /><br />
<h2>Install and use ALTA</h2>
Documentation to \ref install
There are many ways in which you can extend ALTA. Please refer to
\ref contribute for more information.
Documentation to \ref contribute
The \ref plugins_manager class allows to load plugins and provide access
to requested elements. See the documentation of this class.
\defgroup core
\defgroup plugins
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