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Open Access Publications from the University of California

PermWeb: remote parallel and distributed volume visualization


In this paper we present a system for visualizing volume data from remote supercomputers (PermWeb). We have developed both parallel volume rendering algorithms, and the World Wide Web software for accessing the data at the remote sites. The implementation uses Hypertext Markup Language (HTML), Java, and Common Gateway Interface (CGI) scripts to connect World Wide Web (WWW) servers/clients to our volume renderers. The front ends are interactive Java classes for specification of view, shading, and classification inputs. We present performance results, and implementation details for connections to our computing resources at the University of Cahfornia Santa Cruz including a MasPar MP-2, SGI Reality Engine-RE2,and SGI Challenge machines. We apply the system to the task of visualizing trabecular bone from finite element simulations. Fast volume rendering on remote compute servers through a web interface allows us to increase the accessibility of the results to more users. User interface issues, overviews of parallel algorithm developments, and overall system interfaces and protocols are presented.

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