In the course of either searching for information within data or in preparing images for publication that explain data, it is often necessary to process the raw data in various ways. Examples include slicing into the data to make the interior visible, extracting regions that have particular qualities, and computing statistical measurements from the data. All of these operations involving taking in some original data and using it to compute some derived quantities. This chapter explains how you control the data processing portion of ParaView's visualization pipeline to do such analyses.
A filter is the basic tool that you use to manipulate data. If data is a noun, then a filter is the verb that operates on the data. Filters operate by ingesting some data, processing it and producing some other data. In the abstract sense a data reader is a filter as well because it ingests data from the file system. ParaView creates filters when you open data files and instantiate new filters form the Filters menu. The set of filters you create becomes your visualization pipeline, and that pipeline is shown in ParaView's Pipeline Browser.