Remember caveman-jim?

I wrote a blog addressing a forum post by caveman-jim a while ago… It seems that he recently edited the post to include the following:

edit – if you’re reading this from a link on ‘scalis blog‘ then I think he’s the one that doesn’t understand how modern GPU’s work on quads of pixels in groups of four (quad quad processing) and tessellation below a certain factor (making triangles smaller than inside a single quad) stalls the pipeline as you have to rerun the quad over and over again, for no discernible increase in visual quality. Crysis 2 is the perfect example of this, despite having 3-pixel triangles, tessellation is used to make a smooth sided shape… smoother, with more complex internal geometry.

Now it’s quite obvious once again what is wrong with this… At first I wanted to just respond to this on the forum. However, my post appears to have gotten deleted within minutes of me writing it (edit: hours later, the post magically reappeared again). So I will just have to post the response on my blog instead then.

Caveman-jim still does not get it. Yes, obviously I know about quads (these people have no idea, do they? Dunning-Kruger much?). But having triangles smaller than a quad does not really change the story. As I said, triangles have to be more than 2 pixels wide in order to see space between wireframes. Which implies they have to be larger than a quad at all times. It seems Caveman-jim also forgot to factor in MSAA. Namely, the quads work at the multisampled resolution, and games are generally tested/benchmarked/played with 4xAA or more, on the more high-end cards. However, the tessellation factors are determined on the triangle size on screen, not on the multisampled resolution.

I can also refer to an earlier blog once again, which covered Beyond3D’s analysis of triangle throughput vs triangle area, showing that Radeons are actually more efficient at handling very small triangles. So if anyone would have an issue with sub-quad triangles, it would be nVidia, not AMD. All the more reason to conclude that triangle size is not the issue here.

Lastly, I can refer once again to my blog on Crysis 2, you can argue that Crysis 2’s artwork does not make the most efficient use possible of the geometry detail. However, arguing that it it uses too much geometry just seems wrong. There clearly is hardware on the market that is capable of handling these levels of geometry. So that is exactly what we want. We want our graphics to be as detailed and realistic as possible, and geometry detail is a very important factor in this. It still surprises me that people are so scared of polycount.

Update: Caveman-jim replied on his forum

Attacking me in your blog is a very bad way to get yourself to be relevant. As such, I’m not interested in your opinion, which seems to self-supporting circular logic (‘I believe X, so I’ll find Y to support it, thus supporting my premise that you’re wrong’) rather than based on discussion with industry figures (i.e. GPU designers, game developers) and analysis of hardware performance results with respect to perceived differences in quality.
+1 to the ignore list.

Well, that’s funny, isn’t it? Boasting that you discuss with GPU designers and game developers… to try and discredit an actual developer? Someone here doesn’t know his position in the foodchain… Not to mention that ‘opinion’ doesn’t quite do justice to the coverage I’ve given on tessellation with various articles on this blog.

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9 Responses to Remember caveman-jim?

  1. Pingback: What people like caveman-jim still don’t get about tessellation… | Scali's blog

  2. Hippo says:

    Oh yea, when you sign up there is a certain number of posts that have to be approved by a mod. No conspiracy theory. :p
    but the point is moot now that the thread is locked.

  3. Ristogod says:

    How gross. You have to use a blog to pick out people you find on the internet and make entire articles trying to deface them. Grow up.

    • Scali says:

      What a creative interpretation!
      No, I post technical information and backgrounds on hardware and software issues. A while ago, tessellation was a hot subject, since the various IHVs were spreading all kinds of marketing nonsense on how tessellation should and shouldn’t be used.
      So I decided to stick my neck out and give people an indepedent, objective source of information on how tessellation works, what the capabilities of various GPUs are, and where various software may or may not be doing things correctly/favouring a particular IHV.
      Caveman-jim just happened to be one of the people who continued to perpetuate various myths from a certain IHV. Even in this post I stick to technical information to disprove what he is saying. If you call that ‘defacing’, that is your problem.
      Caveman-jim is also a person with a very arrogant and rude disposition, so I took the liberty to set him straight on that.

      If people like Caveman-jim showed a little more respect towards developers and other people who are considerably more knowledgeable and experienced than they are, the world would be a much nicer place.

      • Ristogod says:

        Wow, you’ve set me straight. I see the errors of my ways now. You’re right. What we need is more people like you, championing the crusade to call out people on the internet and make examples of them. Only then will people start showing respect to these deserving developers.

        Yep. That doesn’t sound gross or arrogant at all when you express it like that.

        Oh in case you’re going to play ignorant or obtuse, the above wreaks of sarcasm.

      • Scali says:

        ‘Ignorant’ indeed. Sounds like you didn’t bother to read more than just this one post (not even followed any of the links in it).
        People like you (just like Caveman-jim) should do some research before opening their big ignorant mouth.
        You have no right to judge a person based on a single blogpost of which you don’t even understand the context. The fact that you do anyway makes you both ignorant and arrogant.

        You see, Caveman-jim’s first mistake is that he assumes he’s the smarter one in any discussion (which I see as a lack of respect towards others). Instead of paying closer attention to what I’m saying, he assumes he’s right, and goes on about something ridiculous like me not knowing how rasterization works (had he read this blog more clearly, he would actually have found a series of posts which explain how to implement polygon rasterizers on a variety of hardware. Do you REALLY want to go down that line of argument with me?).
        Had he just taken the time to see who he was dealing with, perhaps he would have bothered to read what I said more clearly, and wondered why I said it. Perhaps he would even have doubted his own statements.
        But no, his knee-jerk reaction was to assume that I’m some ignorant fool and proceeded to put his foot further down his mouth.

        Either that, or he really IS that biased, and all that matters is that I criticized AMD’s tessellation, which is intolerable to him.


    Typical AMD fanboys can’t accept the fact AMD/ATI sucks at tessellation

  5. I really enjoy reading this blog, as well as your various cocky declarations in forums which, not often enough, are sifted to the front of Google’s search algorithm via minimal keyword manipulation. I find your thesis to be compelling, although I don’t agree with it, and it’s conclusion overwhelmingly favoring Nvidia. What is very clear, utterly missed by antagonists, and objectively without question is that your “bias” derives from a sincere belief, developed by a technical insight & hands-on experience that passes judgment on substantive rendering pipeline functionality. Correct me if I’m wrong, though I don’t suspect I am, but you’re critical of AMD’s implementation of geometric rendering and provide a specific, elaborate, point to point explanation of why.

    This is a bias of belief & ideals, when you really consider it, very much in diametric opposition to so-called mindless fanboyism. (I suppose, in a strict sense, it’s not actually “bias”, – semantics aside). It’s substantive. You believe AMD is causing harm in effect of stalling graphic development by providing an inferior system. Sounds like a very important, very worthy belief to assert a position upon. Keep up the blog bud.

    • Scali says:

      I’m only favouring nVidia because they are the ones who got tessellation right at this point. If AMD had the better tessellation implementation, I’d be all for it (I’ve been pushing for tessellation long before the first DX11 hardware arrived, pointing out Pixar’s REYES rendering technique and trying to implement some kind of realtime version of that using GPGPU, before we had dedicated hardware)… But so far AMD has released 3 generations of DX11 hardware, and their tessellator is still a weak point. When exactly is AMD going to release a GPU that is at least competitive with nVidia’s in terms of tessellation?

      The last thing we need is people like Caveman-jim making up useless excuses as to why we wouldn’t need GPUs capable of good tessellation (which obviously they are only saying because their favourite brand happens to be bad at it).
      These people make a fool out of themselves constantly. Case in point: they were all over Crysis 2, because it performed much better on nVidia hardware at the time. So then it MUST be unfair, right? “Over-tessellation” (what a silly concept).
      As you can read elsewhere on my blog, I actually defended Crysis 2, saying it wasn’t all that insanely tessellated.
      And lo and behold, when AMD released the 7970, it actually became the fastest GPU in Crysis 2. This could only be possible if Crysis 2’s tessellation wasn’t that extreme, because the 7970 still has an obvious weak point past tessellation factor 12.

      I just want AMD to improve their GPUs. Heck, their tessellators in the 5000-series are so bad, even the Intel HD4000 outperforms them.

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