The Persistence of Vision Ray Tracer, most commonly acronymed as POV-Ray, is a cross-platform ray-tracing program that generates images from a text-based scene description. It was originally based on DKBTrace, written by David Kirk Buck and Aaron A. Collins for Amiga computers. There are also influences from the earlier Polyray raytracer because of contributions from its author, Alexander Enzmann. POV-Ray is free and open-source software, with the source code available under the AGPL-3.0-or-later license.
Sometime in the 1980s, David Kirk Buck downloaded the source code for a Unix ray tracer to his Amiga. He experimented with it for a while and eventually decided to write his own ray tracer named DKBTrace after his initials. He posted it to the "You Can Call Me Ray" bulletin board system (BBS) in Chicago, thinking others might be interested in it. In 1987, Aaron A. Collins downloaded DKBTrace and began working on an x86 port of it. He and David Buck collaborated to