Disney releases Ptex texture mapper as open source
Disney has announced that it has released the Ptex "Per-Face Texture Mapping" library as open source under a BSD license. The code, which was used for "virtually ever surface" on the animated feature film Bolt, has been integrated into Pixar's RenderMan Pro server. Ptex's major feature is that it removes the need to carry out manual assignment when "UV mapping" textures to remove seams and joins, a process which is often regarded as one of the more tedious parts of creating 3D animation.
Ptex is both an API , which handles I/O and filtering, and a file format designed to efficiently store thousands of texture images in a single file. It is, according to the dedicated Ptex web site, the primary texture mapping method for all Walt Disney Animation Studio releases. With the open sourcing of the library, it is possible that the Ptex format and algorithms could be incorporated into other open source 3D modelling packages such as Blender. Use of the library is demonstrated in a YouTube video, Painting 3D models with Ptex.