POVRay Short Code Contest - Round 5, The animation round!

Other rounds: [Round 3] [Round 4]

Final Results

Maintained by Paul Bourke
Supported by iVEC


This is round five of the POVRay short code contest, again held over the Christmas period so POVRay enthusiasts (at least those who live in countries that slow down during this time of year) have no reason to be bored during the holiday season. The idea of this competition is to create an "artistic" work using a very small POVRay file. The difference with previous rounds is this is an animation round! In addition, the maximum size will be increased from 256 to 512 bytes (rather excessive really).

The real reward for winners of this competition is the adoration/respect of your peers. However I am pleased to announce that the top two entries (voted for by entrants) will be awarded a Amazon gift card to the value of $80.

Important dates
  • Entries may be submitted up to midnight of the 31st January 2008. Status: Closed

  • Checking of submitted/rendered results by entrants until the 7th February. Status: Closed

  • Voting open to the entrants until the 15th of February. Status: Closed

  • Results released "soon" afterwards. Status: Now available


  • A valid entry will consist of a single text file containing at most 512 bytes. The POV file must be totally self contained, it may not "bring in" any external files that are distributed with PovRay, this includes the use of "#include" and POVRay font files.

  • The animation to be judged will be rendered using POVRay 3.6.1 running on a reasonably well endowed Linux machine. The scene must obviously generate an animation, entries that are not animated will be excluded.

  • Each entrant may submit at most 2 entries, each entry must be distinctly different.

  • Each entry will be rendered with the default POVRay settings along with the following ".ini" file. The animation will consist of exactly 100 frames, the author can choose the frame rate.

  • The animations will be presented as QuickTime movies. Every attempt will be made to use a codec that introduces no visible compression artefacts.

Submitting an entry

An entry can include the following information, the first three are compulsory.

  • A valid email address. As organiser I may need to contact you, it goes without saying that your email address will not be passed onto anyone or displayed on a web page.

  • A text file containing no more than 512 characters. It is this file that will be rendered by POVRay at 400x300 pixels to form the animation.

  • The frame rate that the animation will be played at, this may range from 1fps up to 30fps.

  • A more human readable version of the above file. Optional but recommended.

  • A text or HTML formatted file with any other comments the entrant wishes to make. For example, a description of the animation, the motivation, any tricks employed, etc. Again, optional but strongly recommended.

When you've created your masterpiece and have checked it carefully, hit the button below to submit it.

Competition entries closed

Entries will appear on the voting page in the order they arrive, so get in early!


Voting is only open to entrants and they are encouraged to vote on the craft ... the animation and source code will be visible. There will be two prizes awarded: gold, and silver based solely on the peer voting. The voting process will be made as transparent as possible, however the coordinator (me) reserves the right to decide upon any matter in dispute.

  • Each entrant will choose what they believe are the five best entries. These choices get 3, 2, 1, 1, 1 points respectively.

  • Voters may not vote for their own animation.

After the winners have been announced, the animation, source code, and any additional information provided by the entrant will be included on a WWW page ... for the adoration of your peers now and into the future.

Post event fun: Slashdot effect (17th February)

The competition announcement was made on Slashdot in the early hours of the 17th February. The result was an excellent demonstration of the so called "Slashdot effect", namely an incredible hit on the web server involved. We "survived" although I believe at the peak some users experienced a lower than expected bandwidth. The bottom line is we went from serving between 5 to 6 GB per day to 288GB in one day, see log report below. Once the story drops off the Slashdot front page things return to normal quickly.