For those who don't know, Notch is a game developer who's been making indie games for a number of years now, including critically acclaimed Minecraft. Some of the things he stated, I didn't even account for. Totally forgot voxels, I did.
I was under the impression that point cloud data didn't store polygon data, but let a sophisticated vector rendering algorithm generate polygons from the point cloud. Like a bitmap holds pixels, but a vector holds lines.
Nope, they are just points that have their own cordinates and have data that connect them with edges. The same applies to polygonal.
A point cloud is just the term they use for the points that arn't connected yet. They use this in 3d scanning. First they calculate the point cloud and then recalculate the edges.
It is absolutely not BS, it is the truth in the state of the art. The onus is on them to prove that it is not venture capitalist bait not everyone else to try to prove some fancy video is not simply smoke and mirrors.
I have to point out, Kotaku misquoted Notch, and the quotes given from Carmack between the articles are not the same. Misquoting is the first way a news medium loses my faith.
Anyway, even in that PR bit, he still doesn't go into the amount of data that has to be sifted through to FIND the points to display on your 1280x1024 (1310720 pixel) screen. If you have a voxel model with that much detail, and each voxel takes up only 1 byte (not enough data to do much, but we'll be generous) you have gigabytes upon gigabytes of data to filter through for even the simplest renders. It doesn't matter how efficient their search algorithm is, the bulk it has to search through is massive.
The issue of processing consumption and memory use was never touched on, indicating to me, Notch was probably right on the mark about it.