I guess I didn't fully comprehend what was defined by ray tracing....I thought it was strictly a sort of direct lighting effect in modeling, like shadows/ shading.
What I've gathered so far from lecture is that it returns more information about the model than its location.
So by "refraction", is it safe to say that ray tracing carries information about the surfaces the ray vector comes in contact with and translates that to other surfaces??
Someone please correct me if I'm misdirected.
My favorite 3D graphics software is Autodesk Maya. This lecture helped me understand some of the parameters in its lighting settings. If I create a directional light in Maya (a light that just goes in one direction, often used to simulate the sun), there is an option for each individual light called "Ray Depth limit." I now understand why it's called that. It's the cap number of times the ray can "bounce" during raytracing. For example, if I set "Ray Depth Limit" to 2, only secondary rays as shown in the slide will be computed. No 3rd bounces will be made.
@frgalvan — from what I understand, you are right in thinking that ray tracing is meant to represent the path of light in a model. Refraction is what occurs when light is passed through or reflected through an object, such as the glass ball in the next slide. Notice that because the glass ball is transparent, the light becomes distorted inside of it but also passes through it partially onto the ball behind it. So, ray tracing deals with both indirect and indirect lighting effects, and I believe has to do with the path of light, its intensity and distortion, and how it is affected by different surfaces.