ParaView Glance rendering of a chest CT scan from a patient with COVID-19.  The characteristic ground-glass opacities are clearly visible and their burden on the lungs can be estimated in 3D.  Data provided by J. P. Cohen, P. Morrison, and L. Dao, “COVID-19 image data collection”, arXiv:2003.11597, 2020

Where is your data? “Data” is often one of the most valuable yet neglected elements of a research project or a commercial product. It is often stored on USB drives in employee’s desks and/or analyzed and visualized by awkward sequences of programs that require multiple data format conversions and entirely too much manual interaction.

Kitware has been producing tools for scientific data visualization (e.g., VTK and ParaView), analysis (e.g., ITK), and management (e.g., Girder) for decades.

Today we are pleased to announce the release of ParaView Glance version 4.9 (github | release) that demonstrates how all of those tools can be brought together as a seamless web-based application.

ParaView Glance supports GPU-accelerated rendering of multiple data formats: volumes, surfaces, point clouds, molecules, texture maps, and much more – in your web browser.

ParaView Glance runs in your web browser and builds upon:

  • VTK.js: is our toolkit for in-browser rendering for a wide range of data types: point clouds, volumes, surfaces, molecules, and more
  • ITK.js: offers a multitude of image processing algorithms, including advanced segmentation and registration methods
  • ParaView (Web): provides the application foundation for scientific visualization
  • Girder: provides web-based data management and processing

This version of ParaView Glance particularly features improved integration with Girder, our web-based data management system.   It demonstrates user authentication to access data on the web as well as uploading annotations, measurements, and painted-overlays back to Girder, while maintaining data provenance, with the click of a single button.

ParaView Glance demonstrates integrated Girder user authentication, data downloading, and annotation uploading.

For data review and annotation, ParaView Glance also demonstrates how ITK.js can be easily used to assist in segmenting, registering, and analyzing data.

ITK.js provides data analysis algorithms that run in your web browser. In this video, median filtering is applied to a volumetric image.

Other improvements in this release include:

  • Load / save state – Image data, visualization parameters, and annotations can be saved as compact ParaView Glance state files. Preserving and sharing your best data and visualizations is now inherent in ParaView Glance.
  • VTK.js 13.13.1 – Offers numerous improvements in rendering performance and rendering capabilities.
  • ITK.js 12.2.0 – Contains improved performance, DICOM support, and infrastructure improvements including improved continuous testing to ensure that image I/O and filtering in ParaView Glance and other ITK.js projects remain stable as development continues.

The roadmap for ParaView Glance includes future versions that will integrate with back-end Python and ParaView servers, running locally or in the cloud.   Additionally, we are developing the ability to launch Girder Workers from within ParaView Glance.

The detailed release notes for this and all prior versions of ParaView Glance, VTK.js, ITK.js, and Girder are available at the following links:

ParaView Glance, VTK.js, ITK.js, and Girder are offered as freely available, open source platforms that can be integrated into academic and commercial systems.   Contact us at to learn how we can help you show your data the respect it deserves, via the powerful integration of these tools for your research, processes and products.

This work was funded, in part, by the National Institute Of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS), the National Institute Of Biomedical Imaging And Bioengineering (NIBIB), and the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), via NIH grants R01EB021396, R01EB014955, R01EB028283, and R42NS086295

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