This is the Home Page of MeshSmith, a freeware Java utility which allows you to generate almost any kind of Mathematical Surfaces for your favorite rendering program. MeshSmith works under Windows, Linux and Macintosh ... actually, it works under any OS with a Java VM installed.

"Almost any kind" of surface, means you can generate a mesh from the following categories of surfaces:

The program is interactive: once the equations are inserted, you can see a 3D preview of your surface, spin it around in every direction, move it as you wish, and zoom in and out. For this reason, the program has also a nice use as a viewer of graphs and surfaces.

When you are satisfied, you can save your surface as a 3D mesh, either in a format suitable for the freeware rendering program POV-Ray, or in AutoCAD's DXF (a format understood by most commercial and shareware 3D-graphics packages).

You can follow the links above for more information, or to see a few images created with the program. In the meantime, let me thank you very much for your help in improving the depressing Access Statistics for this site...

If you wish to find more stuff related to digital graphics, raytracing, and the like, an excellent repository of web resources is the Digital Waterfalls Home Page




Acknowledgements: I had the idea to develop this program while taking part to a joint project of the Department of Mathematics, University of Trento (the place where I work) and of the Art Institute of Trento, for the preparation of an Exhibition on the Calculus of Variations. Indeed, we had the problem of generating a DXF file describing the graph of a function, to feed it into a computer-controlled milling machine and realize a "solid" model. You'll find more information on the project on my home page. Beside this, the program is also the result of some reflections on the teaching of Mathematics: I feel that a good viewer of graphs and surfaces, as well as a rich zoo of rendered images, can be very useful in the hard task of introducing my students to the beauties of Calculus and Mathematical Analysis in general!

I should also mention that in the program I used an excellent equation parser by Darius Bacon, so I didn't need to write a new one. I slightly modified the code to suit some of my needs (in particular, I added support for the binary operators max(expr1, expr2) and min(expr1, expr2): if you find a bug there, I am guilty for it! I also used the class "Matrix3D" from the first version of Sun's JDK. This is a small class for basic matrix algebra: I kept it instead of rewriting the code just because I am lazy...

If you have comments, or bugs to submit, please write: baldo@science.unitn.it.



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