Node: Declaring and Initializing Points, Next: Setting and Assigning to Points, Previous: Points, Up: Points

The most basic drawable object in 3DLDF is `class Point`

. It is
analogous to `pair`

in Metafont. For example, in Metafont one
can define a `pair`

using the "z" syntax as
follows:

z0 = (1cm, 1cm);

There are other ways of defining `pairs`

in Metafont (and
MetaPost), but this is the usual way.

In 3DLDF, a Point is declared and initialized as follows:

Point pt0(1, 2, 3);

This simple example demonstrates several differences between Metafont
and 3DLDF. First of all, there is no analog in 3DLDF to Metafont's
"z" syntax.
If I want to have `Points`

called "`pt0`

", "`pt1`

",
"`pt2`

", etc., then I must declare each of them to be a
`Point`

:

Point pt0(10, 15, 2); Point pt1(13, 41, 5.5); Point pt2(62.9, 7.02, 8);

Alternatively, I could declare an array of `Points`

:

Point pt[3];

Now I can refer to `pt[0]`

, `pt[1]`

, and `pt[2]`

.

In the Metafont example, the x and y-coordinates of the `pair z0`

are specified using the unit of measurement, in this case, centimeters.
This is currently not possible in 3DLDF. The current unit of
measurement is stored in the static variable `Point::measurement_units`

,
which is a `string`

. Its default value is `"cm"`

for
"centimeters".
At present, it is best to stick with one unit of measurement for a
drawing.
After I've defined an input routine, 3DLDF should handle
units of measurement in the same way that Metafont does.

Another difference is that the `Points`

`pt0`

, `pt1`

, and
`pt2`

have three coordinates, x, y, and z, whereas `z0`

has
only two, x and y. Actually, the difference goes deeper than this. In
Metafont, a `pair`

has two parts, `xpart`

and `ypart`

,
which can be examined by the user. In 3DLDF, a `Point`

contains
the following sets of coordinates:

world_coordinates user_coordinates view_coordinates projective_coordinates

These are sets of 3-dimensional homogeneous coordinates, which means that they contain four coordinates: x, y, z, and w. Homogeneous coordinates are used in the affine and perspective transformations (see Transforms).

Currently, only `world_coordinates`

and
`projective_coordinates`

are used in 3DLDF.
The `world_coordinates`

refer to the position of a `Point`

in
3DLDF's basic, unchanging coordinate system.
The `projective_coordinates`

are the coordinates of the
two-dimensional projection of the `Point`

onto a plane.
This projection is what is ultimately printed out or displayed on the
computer screen. Please note, that when the coordinates of a
`Point`

are referred to in this manual, the
`world_coordinates`

are meant, unless otherwise stated.

`Points`

can be declared and their values can be set in different
ways.

Point pt0; Point pt1(1); Point pt2(2.3, 52); Point pt3(4.5, 7, 13.205);

`pt0`

is declared without any arguments, i.e., using the default
constructor, so the values of its x, y, and
z-coordinates are all 0.

`pt1`

is declared and initialized with one argument for the x-coordinate,
so its y and z-coordinates are initialized with the values of
`CURR_Y`

and `CURR_Z`

respectively.
The latter are static constant data members
of class `Point`

, whose values are 0 by default. They can be reset
by the user, who should
make sure that they have sensible values.

`pt2`

is declared and initialized with two arguments for its x and
y-coordinates, so its z-coordinate is initialized to the value of
`CURR_Z`

. Finally, `pt3`

has an argument for each of its
coordinates.

Please note that `pt0`

is constructed using a the default
constructor, whereas the other `Points`

are constructed using a
constructor with one required argument (for the x-coordinate), and two
optional arguments (for the y and z-coordinates). The default
constructor always sets all the coordinates to 0, irrespective of the
values of `CURR_Y`

and `CURR_Z`

.