Overview of Release 3.5

Overview of Release 3.5

New Features

Simplified Surface Evaluation

The new Bfr interface provides an alternative to Far and Osd for evaluating the limit surface -- treating a subdivision mesh as a piecewise parameteric surface primitive.

The Bfr interface is named for Base Face Representation as all concepts and classes relate to the individual faces of the original unrefined mesh, i.e. its "base faces". Each base face has a piece of limit surface associated with it (Bfr::Surface) that is parameterized (Bfr::Parameterization) and so can be evaluated and tessellated:


The limit surface for each face can be identified and evaluated independently of any other faces without any global pre-processing of a connected mesh. The resulting evaluation interface is much simpler, more flexible and more scalable than those assembled with the table-based class in Far -- providing a preferable alternative for many CPU-based use cases (though not all).

See the Bfr Overview documentation for more details.

Tessellation Patterns

In addition to evaluation, the Bfr interface includes a Tessellation class that provides tessellation patterns for all faces of a base mesh. A Tessellation does not encapsulate the entire tessellation process but simply provides topological patterns to assemble such a process.

All faces of a mesh have a Parameterization which can be used to define a Tessellation with the specification of one or more tessellation rates. A single tessellation rate defines simple uniform tessellations:

images/bfr_tess_quad_tris.png images/bfr_tess_pent_tris.png images/bfr_tess_uni_tri_5.png

while tessellation rates for each edge provide more complex non-uniform patterns:

images/bfr_tess_nonuni_quad_A.png images/bfr_tess_nonuni_pent_A.png images/bfr_tess_nonuni_tri_A.png

A small set of options is also available to define the resulting patterns (e.g. the preservation of quad faces with quad-based subdivision schemes (above left and center)) and to generate its output in a more favorable form.

Tessellation patterns do not support the full flexibility of typical hardware tessellation (e.g. no fractional tessellation) but do provide some useful alternatives to hardware tessellation (e.g. the quad preservation previously noted, and more uniform triangles for triangular patches (above right)).

The Tessellation class is also completely independent of evaluation in Bfr, and so can be used with any other evaluation interface.

See the Tessellation subsection of the Bfr Overview for more details.

API Additions

See associated Doxygen for full details.

New classes in namespace Bfr

  • class Parameterization
  • class Surface
  • class SurfaceFactory
  • class SurfaceFactoryCache
  • class SurfaceFactoryMeshAdapter
  • class RefinerSurfaceFactory
  • class Tessellation

Additions to Far::TopologyLevel

  • TopologyLevel::IsVertexCorner()
  • TopologyLevel::IsVertexRegular()
  • TopologyLevel::IsVertexInfSharp()
  • TopologyLevel::IsVertexSemiSharp()
  • TopologyLevel::IsEdgeInfSharp()
  • TopologyLevel::IsEdgeSemiSharp()

Additions to nested Options classes in Far

  • PatchTableFactory::Options::SetMaxIsolationLevel()
  • TopologyRefiner::UniformOptions::SetRefinementLevel()
  • TopologyRefiner::AdaptiveOptions::SetMaxIsolationLevel()
  • TopologyRefiner::AdaptiveOptions::SetMaxSecondaryLevel()

Other Changes

Deprecation Announcements

  • Hbr is deprecated and will be removed from subsequent releases


  • Suppression of GCC compiler warnings (GitHub #1253, #1254, #1270)
  • Additional methods for Far::TopologyLevel (GitHub #1227, #1255)
  • Improved mixed partial derivative at Gregory patch corners (GitHub #1252)
  • Minor improvements to Far tutorials (GitHub #1226, #1241)
  • Added CMake config (GitHub #1242)
  • Updated CMake minimum version to 3.12 (GitHub #1237, #1261)
  • Updated documentation build scripts for Python 3 (#1265, #1266)
  • Updated 'stringify' build tool for improved cross compilation support (GitHub #1267)
  • Added 'NO_MACOS_FRAMEWORKS' build option (GitHub #1238)
  • Updated Azure pipelines agents for Unbuntu and macOS (GitHub #1247, #1256)
  • Removed obsolete AppVeyor and Travis CI scripts (GitHub #1259)

Bug Fixes

  • Cache active program for Osd::GLComputeEvaluator (GitHub #1244)
  • Fixed member initialization warnings in Osd::D3D11ComputeEvaluator (GitHub #1239)
  • Fixed GLSL shader source to remove storage qualifiers from struct members (GitHub #1271)
  • Fixed use of CMake variables for Apple builds (GitHub #1235)
  • Fixed build errors when using OpenGL without GLFW (GitHub #1257)
  • Fixed links to embedded videos (GitHub #1231)