POV-Ray : Newsgroups : povray.advanced-users : Making Patterns with functions : Re: Making Patterns with functions Server Time
22 May 2024 01:42:43 EDT (-0400)
  Re: Making Patterns with functions  
From: Bald Eagle
Date: 6 Jan 2024 10:45:00
Message: <web.6599745fd81b84791f9dae3025979125@news.povray.org>
Thomas de Groot <tho### [at] degrootorg> wrote:

> First of all: a Happy (and POV-Productive) New Year.

Thanks Thomas, I hope to see some more excellent landscapes, textures, or even
just doodles with no particular point behind them.

> I am literally speechless.

Ha!  So was I.  :D  The shader is literally only 6 lines of code.
It still took me a fair amount of time to grope in the pitch black towards a

The funny thing is, earlier in the day I had been struggling (once more) to make
a simple spiral pattern, and here is a spiral, evenly divided into cells by
spiral arc-length, with different animated spirals in each cell!
I was also really happy that the solution relied on using the fwidth function,
as that lit a fire under my lazy butt to actually implement that in SDL as well.

So now I think I actually have all of the tools to push  forward on coding the
knots in the wood texture, along with the spiral interpolation thing... all
because I was doing something completely unrelated, and juts serendipitously
stumbled upon a shader that was linked from a page I found through an image

> You did an awesome bit of work and I wouldn't
> know where to begin, especially as my mathematical skills are rather
> rudimentary.

You, and Kenneth, and jr have all expressed as much, but I will tell you that
it's less about "knowing" the math, than simply acquiring a "feel" for it - a
sense of what types of things are related to what you're trying to accomplish,
or recognizing what terms in an equation are likely to be related to what parts
of the graph's shape.
Playing with an existing equation can rapidly sort all of that out, even if
initially it's all as opaque as obsidian.

> Are you going to provide us with some basic guide lines on
> how to start such experimentation? I guess that would be needed for
> several of us, setting us on our way.

Yes, I started summarizing the things I discovered in a comment section of my
patterns scene, and I'm hoping at some point to make further progress on a
function monograph that I started, specifically with jr and Kenneth in mind.

I think there are several things that have prevented me from successfully coding
some of the patterns that I've tried to reproduce in the past - and that makes
me think that I was probably tantalizingly close, but either I fell into the
trap of convincing myself that "it just couldn't be done", or there were some
finer points of how to visualize what was going on that I was missing.
I'm sure I must have threw away a few equations here & there in this last coding
frenzy, simply because I forgot to subtract the whole thing from y, and so it
just looked like a lot of random static.

I'm finishing up an extended family visit, and have an event to attend later
this evening, but after I get everything settled after that, I ought to have
some uninterrupted hours to devote to doing some more experiments, writing some
educational code, and hopefully finding ways to create some example scenes and
explain things clearly enough so that it's easy enough to follow.

It would actually help a lot to just write out a big list of things that you've
always wondered about, want to do, tried but were confused by, or any other
curiosities and speculations - so that I have a target to aim for.
It's not so much that "you don't know math / were never taught it / don't have
the skills", but WHY certain things are confusing or unknown to you.

Then I can think about what needs explaining, how best to explain it, and what
examples I can code to best illustrate the concepts.  And to be honest, I'm
still at the stage where I don't clearly understand exactly how half of the
stuff I code actually works - so I may do a lot of hand-waving until some of the
smarter people (TOK, Jerome, WFP, Ingo) chime in with explanations or links that
lead me by the nose hairs to enlightenment.

All the best,

- BW

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