POV-Ray : Documentation : 1.1 Introduction
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1 Introduction to POV-Ray   1.1.1 Program Description

1.1 Introduction

This book provides a tutorial for the Persistence of Vision Ray-Tracer (POV-Ray). The documentation applies to all platforms to which this version of POV-Ray is ported. The platform-specific documentation is available for each platform separately.

This book is divided into five main parts:

  1. This introduction which explains what POV-Ray is and what ray-tracing is. It gives a brief overview of how to create ray-traced images.
  2. A "Beginning Tutorial" which explains step by step how to use the different features of POV-Ray.
  3. An "Advanced Tutorial" which contains more advanced tutorial topics.
  4. "POV-Ray questions and tips" gives answers to many frequently-asked questions about POV-Ray.
  5. In the "Appendices" you will find some tips and hints, where to get the latest version and versions for other platforms, the POV-Ray licence, information on compiling custom versions of POV-Ray, suggested reading, contact addresses and legal information.

POV-Ray runs on Windows 9x/ME/NT/2000/XP, Macintosh Mac OS and Mac OS X, x86 Linux, UNIX, and other platforms.

We assume that if you are reading this document then you already have POV-Ray installed and running. However the POV-Team does distribute this file by itself in various formats including online on the Internet. If you do not have POV-Ray or are not sure you have the official version or the latest version, see appendix "What to do if you don't have POV-Ray".

This book covers only the generic parts of the program which are common to each version. Each version has platform-specific documentation not included here. We recommend you finish reading this introductory section then read the platform-specific information before reading this tutorial.

The platform-specific docs will show you how to render a sample scene and will give you detailed description of the platform-specific features.

The Windows version documentation is available on the POV-Ray program's Help menu or by pressing the F1 key while in the program.

The Mac platform documentation is available via the "Help" menu as well as for viewing using a regular web browser. Details may be found in the "POV-Ray MacOS Read Me" which contains information specific to the Mac version of POV-Ray. It is best to read this document first.

The Unix / Linux version documentation can be found at the same place as the platform independent part. Usually that is /usr/local/share/povray-3.?/html

Section Contents

More about "Beginning Tutorial"

1 Introduction to POV-Ray   1.1.1 Program Description

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