Game Development Reference
In-Depth Information
It is important to realize that matrix multiplication of all kinds is not commu-
tative; in general ab
ba . In particular, to multiply two matrices the number of
columns in the first matrix needs to be the same as the number of rows in the second.
So if we wanted to do
v M
where M is a 3
3matrixand v is a three-element vector, we would have a mis-
match. The vector has one column, and the matrix has three rows. We cannot perform
this multiplication: it is undefined. Some game engines do use a pre-multiplication
scheme, but they do so by treating vectors as having one row and three columns,
[ xyz ]
rather than the column form we have used. With a row vector we can perform
pre-multiplication, but not post-multiplication. Confusingly, I have also seen pre-
multiplication mathematics written with the vector after the matrix (i.e., a matrix
and then a row vector), so it's worth taking care if you are working with existing code.
I will use post-multiplication and column vectors exclusively in this topic. If you are
working with an engine that uses pre-multiplication, you will have to adapt the order
of your code accordingly.
The result of matrix multiplication is a new matrix with the same number of
rows as the first matrix in the multiplication, and the same number of columns as the
second. So, if we multiply a 3
1 vector, we get a matrix with three
rows and one column (i.e., another vector). If we multiply a 3
3 matrix by another
If we are multiplying matrices A and B to give matrix C , each element in C is
found by the formula
C (i,j) =
A (i,k) B (k,j)
where C (i,j) is the entry in matrix C at the i th row and the j th column, and where k
ranges up to the number of columns in the first matrix (i.e., the number of rows in
the second—this is why they need to be the same).
For a 3
3 matrix multiplied by a vector we get
With this result we can implement multiplication of a vector by a matrix. I have over-
loaded the * operator for the matrix class to perform this.
Excerpt from include/cyclone/core.h
* Holds an inertia tensor, consisting of a 3x3 row-major matrix.
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