The article excerpted here, “Photorealistic Rendering Has Become an Essential Tool in CAD” by Anthony J. Lockwood, originally appeared in Digital Engineering.
Six or seven years ago, CAD users considered photorealistic visuals desirable, but not critical. Few would have outright rejected a 3D program because it doesn’t offer the option to instantly view the design in a virtual scene, complete with shadows, textures, and ground reflections.
But the flurry of CAD and rendering software partnerships in the last few years suggests a sea change. From small design shops to large manufacturers, more and more businesses are relying on 3D models to evaluate their products’ aesthetic appeal and commercial prospect. This elevates rendering from optional eye candy to essential tool, from cosmetic to vital.
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