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Note that the specific question has since been removed by the author.


This question asks for the second directional derivative in a volume, which sounds vaguely connected to working in 3D but isn't obviously related to computer graphics. Since the question is asked without a graphical context, it's hard to judge whether it is on topic here.

Can people with more in depth knowledge than me of the various areas of computer graphics give reasons why this should or should not be considered part of computer graphics?

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In my opinion, it's not sufficiently related to graphics.

Things like gradient, directional derivative, and curvature are concepts from multi-variable calculus. While these concepts may be used in many scientific and engineering fields including graphics, this question is about purely mathematical details, namely how to numerically evaluate a certain derivative from a data set. The question isn't about rendering, surface extraction, GPU processing, or anything else that would make it on-topic here.

A graphics expert wouldn't likely provide a better answer to this than anyone else familiar with calculus concepts, but a mathematicians might—so I think the question fits better on a mathematics site, such as Math.SE

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