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Physically Based Rendering:
From Theory To Implementation
Matt Pharr, Wenzel Jakob, and Greg Humphreys

Photorealistic computer graphics are ubiquitous in today's world, widely used in movies and video games as well as product design and architecture. Physically based approaches to rendering, where an accurate modeling of the physics of light scattering is at the heart of image synthesis, offer both visual realism and predictability. Now in a comprehensively updated new edition, this best-selling computer graphics textbook sets the standard for physically based rendering in the industry and the field.

Physically Based Rendering describes both the mathematical theory behind a modern photorealistic rendering system and its practical implementation. A method known as literate programming combines human-readable documentation and source code into a single reference that is specifically designed to aid comprehension. The book's leading-edge algorithms, software, and ideas—including new material on GPU ray tracing—equip the reader to design and employ a full-featured rendering system capable of creating stunning imagery. This essential text represents the future of real-time graphics.

The author team of Matt Pharr, Greg Humphreys, and Pat Hanrahan garnered a 2014 Academy Award for Scientific and Technical Achievement from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences based on impact the first and second editions of the book had on how movies are made. The Academy called the book a “widely adopted practical roadmap for most physically based shading and lighting systems used in film production.”

Of the book, Donald Knuth wrote “This book has deservedly won an Academy Award. I believe it should also be nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.”

The full contents of both the third and fourth editions of the book are freely available online.

Table of Contents (4ed, 2023)

Table of Contents (3ed, 2016)