Rendering complex objects realistically requires a whole new kind of geometry
By Ryan BradleyPosted 10.12.2011 at 10:06 am 7 Comments
When Eitan Grinspun's adviser at the California Institute of Technology asked him to help develop a better way to model how cans bend when crushed, the young mathematician did not think it would be a major project. "He lured me into something that took years and years," says Grinspun, now at Columbia University. But the journey to model a crushed Coke can ended with an entirely new field of geometry.
Differential geometry can describe how the curves and surfaces of a given object will bend and crease.