ambient occlusion baking tool
C++ C Other
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This little public domain tool does the following:

  • Generates reasonable UV's for any topologically "clean" mesh.
  • Creates a texture representing ambient occlusion.

The first bullet uses Thekla's parameterization code; the second bullet uses Intel's embree library for raytracing.

Similar Tools

Texture coordinates can be generated using Microsoft's open source UVAtlas tool, which is a somewhat Windows-oriented project.

libigl can do mesh parameterization and ambient occlusion baking. It is protected by the Mozilla Public License.

IBLBaker does something completely different, but also looks interesting.


$ aobaker --help

  Usage: aobaker [options] input_mesh.obj

    --outmesh   OBJ file to produce (result.obj)
    --atlas     PNG file to produce (result.png)
    --sizehint  Controls resolution of atlas (32)
    --nsamples  Quality of ambient occlusion (128)
    --gbuffer   Generate diagnostic images
    --ids       Add a chart id to the alpha channel
    --multiply  Scales the AO values by a constant (1.0)
    --version   Output version
    --help      Output help

Building in OS X

Homebrew is the easiest way to install the dependencies:

$ cp ~/git/aobaker/embree.rb /usr/local/Library/Formula
$ brew install embree tbb cmake

This is optional, but you might want to use a compiler that supports OpenMP, which is a bit tricky if you've already got clang installed. Here's how I did it:

brew uninstall gcc
brew install gcc --without-multilib
export CC=/usr/local/bin/gcc-5
export CXX=/usr/local/bin/g++-5

Now you're ready to build! Here's how to invoke CMake so that it puts all the messy stuff into a folder called build:

$ cmake . -Bbuild      # Generate Makefile
$ cmake --build build  # Build the Makefile