12 GLSL

12.1 Introduction

GLSL, or OpenGL Shading Language, is an incredible tool to have in one's back pocket. With a little bit of code, one can program directly on the GPU.

Many avoid learning GLSL because they believe that it is only useful for working with large textures (4K and beyond), complex 2D generative visual scenes, or creating and manipulating 3D geometry, but it can be used in so many facets of day to day programming. Whether that be optimizing and creating incredibly effecient compositing workflows for standard HD content, or creating simple generative backgrounds for interactive experiences.

The goal of this chapter is to introduce the reader to some basic GLSL workflows and techniques, with the assumption that the reader has no previous GLSL experience.

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