NVidia was going to make new announcements this month. The annual GPU Technology Conference is going to take place on the 22nd of March 2020. However, a strange tweet surfaced on NVidia’s Australian and New Zealand account.
The now-deleted NVidia tweet revealed a blinking eye with a date. The date that was specified in the twitter post was ‘19.03.2020’. Sadly, this tweet did not stay for mere minutes. However, thanks to the people at eTeknix, we at least have a screenshot of the tweet before it was removed.
This further raises many questions like why only New Zealand and Australia or what did the eye indicate? Furthermore, what does that date even indicate? These are questions that the public may ask just by looking at the still shot of the video.
Those who were actually able to view the video describe ‘an eyeball tracking two points of light crossing over the iris’. Speculations state that the deleted Nvidia tweet may be teasing the new Ampere GPU lineup. Though there is also a possibility that this may be indicating a new technique called foveated rendering.
Foveated rendering was demonstrated by NVidia at SIGGRAPH 2016. This consists of an eye-tracking process in order to make VR hog less hardware performance. NVidia explained this further on their devblog by adding:
“Each new increase in the resolution of head-mounted displays (HMDs) means an increase in the number of pixels that the GPU must render. To maintain a fluid VR experience, we must continue to find new ways to optimize VR rendering performance. The emergence of HMDs with integrated eye-tracking offers a new way of improving both perceived visual quality and performance since the human eye perceives visual quality differently across the field of vision.”
Nvidia pointed out that the human eye only picks up maximum details in the fovea, the narrowest region of the eye. While peripheral vision is out of focus, VRS (variable-rate shading) foveated rendering makes use of this fact regarding human perception. It does so by rendering the location of the gaze in higher quality and the peripheral vision renders in low quality. Hence this puts less pressure on the hardware overall.
Lastly, the specified date must have indicated the day of the launch though, the annual GPU Technology Conference was moved to the 22nd of March. This may be the reason why NVidia took down the post.
The deleted tweet may have been a teaser for the upcoming launch of foveated rendering. Whether this has anything to do with Ampere or not, it may still be something entirely different. It may even have something to do with ray tracing. We won’t have to wait much longer to learn the mysteries of the deleted tweet unveil which will take place in about a week.