A group of university students, including myself, are starting a project to create an acoustic prediction feature for BRL-CAD. The idea is to be able to place sound sources in a model and read the amount of sound that hits any arbitrary point, such as in the commercial software EASE. We have 6 developers, 3 of which have audio background. BRL-CAD is new to us, so currently we are becoming familiar with the usage of the software and going through development related documentation.
One problem is that nobody at our university seems to have heard of this software, not even people in any engineering department. We are still in the research phase, but eventually we will need to figure out a way to attack this from a design angle so we can actually make things happen.
So what I'm getting at here is, I'm partially making contact to let you guys know what we're up to but I'm mostly asking if anyone more experienced with BRL-CAD knows how we could get some advice on how to implement this sort of feature.
Thanks in advance!
That sounds fantastic!
There's lots of ways we can probably help you out. A similar experimental project was done with BRL-CAD many years ago simulating energy transport. Using BRL-CAD for analysis purposes (especially from a developer perspective) is actually one of our strongest areas.
As for getting help, there are a number of ways you get in touch with the BRL-CAD developers. Our two main communication methods are presently over IRC (#brlcad on irc.freenode.net) for interactive realtime discussions and on the brlcad-devel mailing list on Sourceforge. The Sourceforge forums are rarely visited due to their limitations (we plan to host our own forums directly on our main website sometime down the road soon).
As for getting started, what you suggest sounds very well suited to a ray tracing application. I'm sure you've read Dinesh Manocha's recent papers about using ray tracing to calculate sound propagation (see Interactive Sound Propagation in Dynamic Scenes Using Frustum Tracing, and other ACM & IEEE papers related to it). BRL-CAD is rather easily adapted to arbitrary ray propagation methods through a pretty simple API (examples on the website).
Thanks for the heads up and I look forward to hearing more about what you're doing!
Zolcos, has anything come of this? It sounds fascinating.