Saturday, July 01, 2006

Fun with curves

During the last few days I've decided that besides some serious bug fixing for Qt 4.2 tech preview I'll work a little on bezier curves. I started looking at interpolation with bezier curves in order to improve the quality of some of the polygons that we're rendering.
For example in 4.2 we actually construct paths from bitmap fonts. The algorithm that we use is basically following the edges doing lineto's between individual elements. The problem is that once you zoom it quite a bit you can see the edges. It's a problem that most SVG's is suffering from as well (blockiness due to extensive usage of lines instead of curves). My algorithm is largely similar to what Maxim Shemanarev did in AGG. The results are really good, so I'm very happy and I hope to get it in soon.
While working on that I used the math in few more places. I finished up the code to do object positioning along a custom path. Which we need in two places: animation support for objects moving along a path and text layout on a path. Both are extremely nice features.
The work Simon is doing on text layouting is just awesome. I'm extremely happy we now have the ability to add application private fonts by working with a truetype file directly. The last time I looked at Poppler it was one of those outstanding things that have been missing. One more missing feature there is the ability to create custom fonts directly from paths and getting Scribe to use them. For example in SVG I've been hacking around it by falling back to a very primitive custom layouting strategy (instead of using Scribe) every time the font that's being specified is a custom font constructed from paths.

Last week, Donald, one of the support engineers from Trolltech, got me to try out his snakeboard. (btw, if you never heard the South African accent i strongly recommend you meet someone from there right away because it's quite an experience). I'll stick to skateboards. Boy, was this sucker hard to control. And Donald figured that the best way to learn how to ride is to try it downtown right next to the harbor. Oh, yeah, because when I'm eating dirt I like as many people as possible to see me. Fortunately after about three fours we've been asked to leave after Donald, in a very crude way, tried to measure the vertical distance between his back and the pavement.

Oh, if I haven't responded to any of your emails it's most likely because I lost them last week.
Today we're kicking off the KDE Four meeting. My birthday is tomorrow and I'll spend it working locked in a cabin, neato ;)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Out of curiousity (and as a South African), what is so amusing about our accents?