One of the keys towards understanding how the brain works as a whole is visualisation of how the individual cells function. In particular, the more morphologically accurate the visualisation can be, the easier it is for experts in the biological field to validate cell structures; photo-realistic rendering is therefore important.
The Blue Brain Project has made major efforts to create morphologically accurate neurons to simulate sub-cellular and electrical activities, e.g. molecular simulations of neuron biochemistry or multi-scale simulations of neuronal function. Ray-tracing can help to highlight areas of the circuits where cells touch each other and where synapses are being created. In combination with ‘global illumination’, which uses light, shadow, and depth of field effects to simulate photo-realistic images, this technique makes it easier to visualise how the neurons function.
Brayns is a minimalistic visualiser that can perform ray-traced rendering of neurons. It provides an abstraction of the underlying rendering engines, so that the best possible acceleration libraries can be used for the relevant hardware. (https://github.com/BlueBrain/Brayns.git).
To keep track of the changes between releases check the changelog.
The following platforms and build environments are tested:
- Linux: Ubuntu 16.04, RHEL 6.8 (Makefile, x64)
Building from Source
In order to ease the application compilation process, we recommend using the following tree structure:
- src +- ispc-v1.9.0-linux +- OSPRay +- BRayns
Intel ISPC compiler
Download and extract ISPC compiler 1.9.0 archive.
Clone embree in the same folder level as ISPC compiler
git clone https://github.com/embree/embree.git mkdir embree/Build cd embree/Build cmake .. -DCMAKE_INSTALL_PREFIX=<Brayns_installation_folder> make install
Clone OSPRay in the same folder level as ISPC compiler
git clone https://github.com/ospray/OSPRay.git mkdir OSPRay/Build cd OSPRay/Build export embree_DIR=<Brayns_installation_folder> cmake .. -DOSPRAY_USE_EXTERNAL_EMBREE=ON -DCMAKE_INSTALL_PREFIX=<Brayns_installation_folder> make install
git clone https://github.com/BlueBrain/Brayns.git mkdir Brayns/Build cd Brayns/Build cmake .. -DOSPRAY_ROOT=<Brayns_installation_folder> -DEMBREE_ROOT=<Brayns_installation_folder> -DCMAKE_INSTALL_PREFIX=<Brayns_installation_folder> make install
A number of dependencies are optional, and are related to some specific Brayns features:
assimp supported mesh file loader (.obj, .ply, etc.)Enable/Disable
cmake .. -DBRAYNS_ASSIMP_ENABLED=ON:OFF
Brion supported morphology file loader (.h5, .swc, BlueConfig, CircuitConfig)Enable/Disable
cmake .. -DBRAYNS_BRION_ENABLED=ON:OFF
cmake .. -DBRAYNS_DEFLECT_ENABLED=ON:OFF
ImageMagick image loadingEnable/Disable
cmake .. -DBRAYNS_IMAGEMAGICK_ENABLED=ON:OFF
Enable/Disable HTTP/REST interface.
cmake .. -DBRAYNS_REST_ENABLED=ON:OFF
Running Brayns viewer
export PATH=<Brayns_installation_folder>/bin:$PATH export LD_LIBRARY_PATH=<Brayns_installation_folder>/lib:$LD_LIBRARY_PATH braynsViewer
Running Brayns off-screen service
export PATH=<Brayns_installation_folder>/bin:$PATH export LD_LIBRARY_PATH=<Brayns_installation_folder>/lib:$LD_LIBRARY_PATH braynsService
Please file a Bug Report if you find new issues which have not already been reported in Bug Report page. If you find an already reported problem, please update the corresponding issue with your inputs and outputs.