Reaction to The Order of Things

This author, Foucault, describes a painting chronologically as a viewer's eye moves around the image. It is not a static image but a dynamic picture unfolding in a moment of numerous saccades. Foucault, describes the discovery of a window in contrast with a mirror:
"But the window operates by the continuous movement of an effusion which, flowing from right to left, unites the attentive figures, the painter, and the canvas, with the spectacle they are observing; whereas the mirror, on the other hand, by means of violent, instantaneous movement, a movement of pure surprise, leaps out from the picture in order to reach that which is observed yet invisible in front of it, and then, at the far end of its fictitious depth, to render it visible yet indifferent to every gaze."

This reminds me of my own idea of making a display which only shows the part of the scene where the eye is looking. It would be useful in a raytracing graphics engine in order to greatly reduce the number of rays cast each frame and thus make it feasible for use in a game. The difficulty is in determining where the eye is looking. This is usually accomplished by tracking the position of the eyeball with video cameras. It may be possible to infer the most likely paths for the eye to travel and only display a limited number of these areas. However, the user would probably have to practice in order to match the expectations of the system.

I am also interested in other alternative graphics techniques than the traditional polygon method. Looking at the color script for The Incredibles was very inspiring; I really liked its abstract depiction of the scenes which also showed the feeling with color and shapes. I thought that graphics like that would be very nice in a computer game, as a sort of vector graphics for 3D. Later, I thought of using a neural network of lines filled with color between them to make a display by rearranging themselves according to the scene. It would be like a living, dynamic, stained glass window.

An similar idea may be found in The Wee Free Men by Terry Pratchett.

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