3d context free
January 2, 2009 12:57 PM   Subscribe

Structure Synth is an application for creating 3D structures from a set of user specified rules. It is an attempt to make a 3D version of Context Free.
posted by signal (8 comments total) 23 users marked this as a favorite
I wonder how useful a context free grammar would be for describing any kind of 3D natural form. Every biological form develops through context sensitive stages. Dunno... crystals maybe?
posted by twoleftfeet at 1:17 PM on January 2, 2009

I just downloaded the Windows zip (you may have to copy the .dll files from the Microsoft.VC90.CRT subfolder to the same folder as the main exe file) and frankly this is pretty amazing. It's one of those simple things I can't believe didn't exist before. I doubt this is going to take over Blender or Maya anytime soon but it's pretty neat for making fractal-esque patterns in 3D. I hope it is able to use multiple cores for rendering. Then my 8-core machine at home will finally come to some good use.
posted by chime at 1:32 PM on January 2, 2009

Quick tip: Press control, shift, or alt while dragging your mouse to move, zoom, and wireframe rotate.
posted by chime at 1:34 PM on January 2, 2009

Correct me if Im wrong, but to me it just looks like an L-system using a new syntax. They are widely used in 3d graphics for plant growth and a bunch of other effects.
posted by phyle at 1:42 PM on January 2, 2009

phyle: Yes, they are.
posted by pwnguin at 4:09 PM on January 2, 2009

Damn, so awesome. "Snowflake" from the Flickr pool caught my eye. I think it must be the natural depth of field and focus effects, as the shapes and colors are rather plain. I also like the lighting on "Box Company" and feeling of motion in "Nabla." But "Microcity" is my favorite. It reminds me of those apps that depict your computer's hard drive utilization using space-filling colored rectangles.

I think we may need an update to this year-old Ask about large format digital printing. A quick search for online poster printers turned up Zazzle.com, UPrinting.com, PrintPlace.com, and LargeFormatPosters.com. Anybody have experience with these services? A high-res render would look great on my wall.
posted by sdodd at 7:45 PM on January 2, 2009 [1 favorite]

chime, it's not to hard to get Structure Synth to use Sunflow for rendering, and Sunflow definitely uses multiple cores. And apparently you can plug Sunflow into Helios to distribute renders to multiple computers, so your 8-core box can share the work with your laptop.
posted by sdodd at 11:06 PM on January 2, 2009 [1 favorite]

Now what would be awsome is if it could use CUDA to take advantage of my GPU.
posted by delmoi at 12:23 AM on January 3, 2009

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