Bump Mapping

Bump mapping is used to add detail to an image without increasing the number of polygons. Bump mapping relies on light-reflection calculations to create small bumps on the surface of the object in order to give it texture; the surface of the object is not changed.

Bumps are applied by matching up a series of grayscale pixelswith colored pixels on the rendered, colored object. Lighter grayscale pixels create a sense of maximum relief or maximum indentation; darker pixels have less effect.

A computer must contain a supporting 3D graphicscard when it runs an application that has been coded to include bump maps. If the graphics card does not support bump mapping, then the bumps won’t be seen. In the case of computer games, the programmer usually will code an alternate version that doesn’t use bump maps. This version will look flatter and less real.

Webopedia Staff
Webopedia Staff
Since 1995, more than 100 tech experts and researchers have kept Webopedia’s definitions, articles, and study guides up to date. For more information on current editorial staff, please visit our About page.

Related Articles

10 Quick Tips For Social Media Marketing

10 Quick Tips for Social Media Marketing Social Media Defined: Social media is a phrase used to describe a variety of Web-based platforms, applications and...

Digital Advertising

What is Digital Advertising? Digital advertising is marketing to a target audience through digital platforms, including social media, email, search engines, mobile apps, affiliate programs,...

E-Commerce

E-commerce, or electronic commerce, is online-conducted business, including marketing, sales, and fulfillment. Consumers and businesses place and track orders at least partially through the...

Virtualization Software

Virtualization software is a digital solution used to create an abstraction layer for hardware. The software creates multiple instances, or virtual machines (VMs), that...

ScalaHosting

ScalaHosting is a leading managed hosting provider that offers secure, scalable, and affordable...

HRIS

Human resources information system (HRIS) solutions help businesses manage multiple facets of their...

Best Managed Service Providers...

In today's business world, managed services are more critical than ever. They can...