Anyway, as anyone who is on the 3d theory list will know, I have been doing some research into soft shadows from area and volume lightsources. It is comming along pretty well in my opinion, and I think it will be viable, possibly even for realtime. Depending on how optimised the stuff can be. I think I can get it to sit pretty well. More details of the algorithm will follow when I get it finalised.
Another thing you may want to do is read the latest SoapBox on Gamedev.net. I agree with what the author had to say, not to the level he took it though. Occasionally even Carmack will reply to the odd special individual (Gee wonder who), and I have had an email conversation (non-GMB) with Brian Hook who although did slam the idea I proposed, even publicly in his .plan, did share with me the details on how Q3:A filters down lightmaps.
Speaking of Soap Boxes, I feel there is something lately that is an incredible waste of time.
Video game violence issues are such a joke, I will almost choke if I here one more person who believes the bunch of polygons Carmack made move can cause violence. Or even worse the right wing feature articles which use DooM for an example, a game almost as old as Billy Joel, or indeed any foot ballers lucky underpants (but less crusty).
In Australia, the last massacre of any proportion is the Port Athur massacre. The offender had problems, and had them since before computer games were accessible to any young kids. He killed people, the gun laws toughened, and we don't have any problems.
If the gun lobby is allowed to keep letting people purchase weapons designed with nothing but killing in mind, they are going to think it is fine. I mean, self defence yes. But who needs a fully automatic assault rifle to do that? Or a rocket launcher? These weapons aren't for self defence, and these weapons are not for the barbacric pursuit of killing animals that don't fight back. They aren't so you can get trophys so you can get a 2 page centre fold in "Better Homes and Gardens".
Media soya propaganda ballony such as this is promoting a view which biases people who have never even seen the games. The truth of the debate is plain and simple. The US gun laws are as slack as the jaws of their gun toting yokels.
Isn't it obvious that even putting such weapons on the market tell people, the government and society think it is socially acceptable for you to buy a weapon with nothing but the intent to kill.
Any one who says "We build assualt rifles, to let people defend themselves," is full of it. They market to the "Crazed Loon" and "Criminals who mean business" niche.
This is not far off many of the articles I have seen, and the "accurate" portrayal they claim to have;
Here are some quotes from game players.
"I play violent video games all the time. Last night I shot my friends with a hyper blaster. One of them got away, but I picked him off with my railgun! The Hyper Blastered friends weren't gibbed so I put them in a cardboard box.Then I took off to the grave yard to see if I could reserect Hitler, and maybe his dog."</satire>