In this article I will introduce the reader to shader programming using the Cg shader programming language. I will use OpenGL graphics API to communicate with the Cg shaders. This article does not explain how use OpenGL. If you require an introduction to OpenGL, you can follow my previous article titled Introduction to OpenGL.
In this article, I will introduce the different types of memory your CUDA program has access to. I will talk about the pros and cons for using each type of memory and I will also introduce a method to maximize your performance by taking advantage of the different kinds of memory.
I will assume that the reader already knows how to setup a project in Microsoft Visual Studio that takes advantage of the CUDA programming API. If you don’t know how to setup a project in Visual Studio that uses CUDA, I recommend you follow my previous article titled [Introduction to CUDA]
This tutorial builds upon the previous article titled [Loading and Animating MD5 Models with OpenGL]. It is highly recommended that you read the previous article before following this one. In this tutorial, I will extend the MD5 model rendering to provide support for GPU skinning. I will also provide an example shader that will perform the vertex skinning in the vertex shader and do per-fragment lighting on the model using a single point light. For a complete discussion on lighting in CgFX, you can refer to my previous article titled [Transformation and Lighting in Cg].
In this article, I will show how you can load and animate models loaded from the MD5 model file format. In this article I will use OpenGL to render the models. I will not show how to setup an OpenGL application in this article. If you need to get a quick introduction on setting up an OpenGVL application, you can follow the “Beginning OpenGL for Game Programmers” article [here].