High Quality 64k NormalMap VT of Earth

Tips for creating and manipulating planet textures for Celestia.
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t00fri
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High Quality 64k NormalMap VT of Earth

Post #1by t00fri » 02.04.2006, 19:00

Hi all,

since some time I am working on a challenging project of
producing a high-quality, fitting set of textures for
Earth
, all 64k native resolution!


The base texture is of course the 84k- > 64k BMNG (Blue
Marble Next Generation).

Hardest do do was certainly the 64K NormalMap in
highest noiseless quality
. It is essentially finished now,
in form of 2k x 2k VT tiles, with resolution optimized in
polar latitudes. The great point is that the normal map data
are precisely those that Reto Stoeckli (NASA) used to
(statically) shade the BMNG base texture! This elevation file
is a 84k, 16bit signed integer raw grayscale file. It's a 8
GB monster!


Reto Stoeckli, with whom I am in extensive communication,
blended the following 'latest generation' elevation data
together:

1. 3 arc-second = 90 m resolution SRTM dataset
(Shuttle Radar Topography Mission, [JPL, 2005]) from
60S-60N.

The SRTM instrument consisted of the Spaceborne Imaging
Radar-C (SIR-C) hardware set modified with a Space
Station-derived mast and additional antennae to form an
interferometer with a 60 meter long baseline.

2. 30 arc-second GTOPO30 dataset [USGS, 1996],
from 60N-90N, and to fill small voids in the SRTM
dataset, using bi-cubic interpolation.

3. RAMP II dataset (Radarsat Antarctic Mapping
Project Digital Elevation Model Version 2, [Liu et al., 2001])
from 90S-60S

+++++++++++++++++
At a later stage I shall provide an extensive tutorial
elsewhere ;-) (...hmm where could that be??) on how to
do all this yourself...
+++++++++++++++++

For now just a little flavor from my normal map tiles: I just
run Celestia with the normal map and the spec map. NO
base texture, to make the effect of the normal map clearly
visible! Below is a corresponding shot:


Bye Fridger

Image

Next, I have inverted (for 3d visibility) a little piece from the
64k NormalMap!:

Image
Last edited by t00fri on 02.04.2006, 23:41, edited 5 times in total.

Fightspit
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Post #2by Fightspit » 02.04.2006, 19:16

GREAT :!: :!: :!:

I think the 64K NormalMap can be used for the 64K (or 128K) Blue Marble Next Generation base texture and the result will be FANTASTIC :!: 8O 8) .

Can you try to do some screenshots with the 64K (or 128K) BMNG and the Normal Map?

Will you do a 128K version of NormalMap?
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Post #3by t00fri » 02.04.2006, 19:25

Fightspit wrote:
I think the 64K NormalMap can be used for the 64K (or 128K)
Blue Marble Next Generation base texture ...

You overread it above: This 64k Normalmap is exactly the
one that was used for the official shaded version of
the BMNG base texture! So it matches perfectly!

....
Will you do a 128K version of NormalMap?


As I explained earlier, the 128K map is nonsense. It is
largely empty information, taking a lot of storage. I will
NOT bother with it.

Bye Fridger

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Post #4by Fightspit » 02.04.2006, 19:36

t00fri wrote:
Fightspit wrote:
I think the 64K NormalMap can be used for the 64K (or 128K)
Blue Marble Next Generation base texture ...

You overread it above: This 64k Normalmap is exactly the
one that was used for the official shaded version of
the BMNG base texture! So it matches perfectly!



OK thanks because I want to be sure that there isn't a problem with the precision between the NormalMap and Base Texture, if you remember there was a similar problem with Specular Texture and Base Texture .
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Post #5by t00fri » 02.04.2006, 19:42

Fightspit wrote:
t00fri wrote:
Fightspit wrote:
I think the 64K NormalMap can be used for the 64K (or 128K)
Blue Marble Next Generation base texture ...

You overread it above: This 64k Normalmap is exactly the
one that was used for the official shaded version of
the BMNG base texture! So it matches perfectly!


OK thanks because I want to be sure that there isn't a problem with the precision between the NormalMap and Base Texture, if you remember there was a similar problem with Specular Texture and Base Texture .


Since your specular texture is hardly usable, because of its
nasty pixelation along river/sea borders and the 2 - 3 pixel shift,
I am also in the process of redoing a high-quality Spec map, directly
from the 84k RAW file that is perfectly matched to the base
texture.


+++++++++++++++++++++++
None of my textures will be uploaded to the
Motherlode!. They may well made available elsewhere ;-) .
+++++++++++++++++++++++

Bye Fridger

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Post #6by Fightspit » 02.04.2006, 19:50

t00fri wrote:None of my textures will be uploaded to the
Motherlode!. They may well made available elsewhere Wink


In here ?:
http://www.celestiaproject.net/~t00fri/

:wink:
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Post #7by t00fri » 02.04.2006, 19:55

Fightspit wrote:
t00fri wrote:None of my textures will be uploaded to the
Motherlode!. They may well made available elsewhere Wink

In here ?:
http://www.celestiaproject.net/~t00fri/

:wink:


NO...elsewhere ;-) Chris' server would collapse...

Bye Fridger

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Post #8by DOOM_NX » 02.04.2006, 22:30

Go, t00fri, go! We look forward to this great job!

Did you just say it's 8GB? 8O
Yours Celestia-noobly,
DOOM_NX

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Post #9by t00fri » 02.04.2006, 22:41

DOOM_NX wrote:Go, t00fri, go! We look forward to this great job!

Did you just say it's 8GB? 8O


Yes, the original 84k RAW file is a 8GB monster that is HARD to handle, indeed.... But after it's reduced to 64k and the resolution adapted optimally wrto polar latitudes, we get down to 1-2 GB /packed/, depending on the file format.

Bye Fridger

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Post #10by t00fri » 02.04.2006, 23:31

Hi all,

here are 5 shots with views that are particularly enhanced
by my new 64k NormalMap .

Enjoy,
Bye Fridger

Image


Image


Image


Image


Image

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Post #11by cartrite » 03.04.2006, 07:44

Hi Fridger,

Nice Job!!!

I could never even open that file. It's BIG. I did do the smaller version that had Goto30 data around the poles if I remember correctly. The thing that troubled me was all the holes in the water regions. Does the 84k version have these holes too?

I ended up using data from the NOAA site.

Again Nice Job. After I build a custom computer, which should be in a couple of months, mabey I'll be able to use 2k tiles.

cartrite

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Post #12by DOOM_NX » 03.04.2006, 12:05

Excellent job! I can't wait getting rid of this 32k set that I currently use and reinstall 64k Blue Marble Next Generation!

Do you think that the 128k texture would be better? It's a big download so I want to know if I miss a big deal.

2GB Monster... :roll: My ADSL 512/128 will bear this one, too! :P

Congratulations one again on this terrific project!
Yours Celestia-noobly,

DOOM_NX



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Post #13by Giorgio » 03.04.2006, 12:41

Grateful as I feel for all the impressive textures and add-ons I downloaded so far, I'm really looking forward to install what feels like the ultimate "skin-set" for Earth.

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Post #14by t00fri » 03.04.2006, 14:25

DOOM_NX wrote:...
Do you think that the 128k texture would be better?
...


NO.

As I explained repeatedly, Fightspit's 128k texture is /blown up/ from
the original 84k texture to 128k. So it is NOT a true 128k texture and
rather contains artefacts that are due to scaling up.


A 128k texture has

131072* 65536 = 8.589934e+9 pixels

The original 84k BMNG texture, however, has only

86400 *43200 = 3.73248e+9 pixels

Hence in Fightspit's blown-up "128k" texture

1 - 3.73248e+9/ 8.589934e+9 = 0.5655 <=>

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++
56.55% of the pixels and thus of independent
information of a 128k texture are missing!
Instead it contains artefacts from the blowing up and
needs another 5GB of storage relative to 64k!
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Bye Fridger

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Post #15by DOOM_NX » 03.04.2006, 15:11

Holy shit...

And how is the newbie supposed to know that when it clicks the download link? :x

These should be clarified at the description...

So I'll stay at 64k! :)

When do you expect your normal map to be released?
Yours Celestia-noobly,

DOOM_NX



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Post #16by t00fri » 03.04.2006, 16:07

DOOM_NX wrote:Holy shit...

And how is the newbie supposed to know that when it clicks the download link? :x
These should be clarified at the description...

I agree. Actually I have already complained about the very uninformative info that goes with Fightspit's "128k" texture at the Motherlode! In view of the large amount of storage this texture takes, a /correct and clear/ information is definitely necessary.

...
When do you expect your normal map to be released?


That depends whether and when a suitable server will be available. Of course NOT the Motherlode. But in any case I shall explain in tutorial form how people can make this set of textures on their own computers.

Bye Fridger

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Post #17by DOOM_NX » 03.04.2006, 16:12

My words aren't enough. Not because I'm Greek, but because I'm "in front of" this great man.

Just keep up the brilliant work!
Yours Celestia-noobly,

DOOM_NX



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Post #18by Fightspit » 03.04.2006, 18:22

t00fri wrote:
DOOM_NX wrote:Holy shit...

And how is the newbie supposed to know that when it clicks the download link? :x
These should be clarified at the description...

I agree. Actually I have already complained about the very uninformative info that goes with Fightspit's "128k" texture at the Motherlode! In view of the large amount of storage this texture takes, a /correct and clear/ information is definitely necessary.


I think Adirondack must precise in the introduction at Earth Surface Map page that the 128K it is not true something like that:

http://www.celestiamotherlode.net/catalog/earth.php

Here the acrual Introduction:

Intro wrote:This page contains surface textures for the planet Earth.
Most textures here are based on data from the NASA project Blue Marble, but have been modified in various ways to enhance colors etc. The original Blue Marble data had a resolution of 42K (43200x21600), but the improved dataset "Blue Marble Next Generation" was made available in 2005, offering a resolution of 86400x43200 and better quality in many details. Note that a 64K texture made from the original dataset has less detail than one made from the "Next Generation" dataset.
Note that "(pre)shaded" refers to textures which have a static shadow already visible on the surface. Generally this looks better than a flat surface texture, but shadows may appear at the wrong side of a mountain because shadows don't follow changes to the sun's position. A "flat" texture on the other hand has no visible shadows, and thus looks pretty dull on it's own. It's highly recommended to use a Normalmap or Bumpmap with flat surface textures, but this requires more memory and more processing power. Using a preshaded texture with a Normalmap/Bumpmap is not recommended.
Please only download what you really need and avoid unnecessary load for the servers. Thank you.
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Post #19by BlindedByTheLight » 04.04.2006, 00:46

Looks great! Your work will be much appreciated!

(one question of clarification: these NormalMaps only give "height" info that can be seen insofar as changing shadows, right? There is no actual "virtual" mountains...?)
Steven Binder, Mac OS X 10.4.10

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Post #20by ElChristou » 04.04.2006, 01:01

BlindedByTheLight wrote:...these NormalMaps only give "height" info that can be seen insofar as changing shadows, right? There is no actual "virtual" mountains...?


Right, Normal map react exactly as a Bump map...
Image


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