Neuroimaging in the Browser using the X Toolkit
Daniel Haehn (Children's Hospital Boston, Harvard Medical School), Nicolas Rannou (Children's Hospital Boston, Harvard Medical School), Banu Ahtam (Children's Hospital Boston, Harvard Medical School), Ellen Grant (Children's Hospital Boston, Harvard Medical School), Rudolph Pienaar (Children's Hospital Boston, Harvard Medical School)
Previous neuroimaging visualization using WebGL has been focused on specific data sets and is not easily generalizable ,. On the other hand, several frameworks for general WebGL development exist , but require a deep understanding of low-level computer graphics programming. Inspired by both approaches, we designed the XTK API to hide low-level elements of WebGL from users and offer native support of established neuroimaging file formats, e.g. supported files can be placed onto a web server and instantly rendered. XTK supports: surface meshes in the Visualization Toolkit, Standard Tessellation, and Freesurfer formats; single-file DICOM volumes and label maps in NRRD and Freesurfer formats; tractography files in the Diffusion Toolkit format; as well as curvature overlays.
XTK is optimized to enable fast data processing and high rendering frame rates. The engine uses caching and optimized loops as well as asynchronous loading. The Google Closure compiler is connected to a CDash infrastructure to monitor the build process and track tests on different browsers. XTK, the build and test system, and all libraries are open sourced and hosted at GitHub .
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