Thursday, October 1, 2015

Apple Imagines Animated 3D Maps with Rippling Water, Realtime Reflections


Apple’s Patent – 3D Animated Maps

If Apple intends to opt in integrating newly patented animation technology, which could add interactive animation to water, foliage as well as other dynamic objects based on touch, motion and sound, Apple Maps would seem to be more convincing.

Apple Maps may then extent to a new level of immersion. U.S. Patent and Trademark Office recently granted Apple U.S. Patent No. 9,146,286, details techniques in enhancing three dimensional photorealist maps, like Apple Maps’ Flyover features, by allocating animation assets to specific map element.

Apple has patented a new option wherein it could use 3D touch in the near future to bring about animated maps to life. The patent explains how the Maps service would display moving water, shorelines, foliage and much more.

The patent titled `Non-static 3D map views’, describes various ways wherein a variety of elements of 3D mapping imagery can be animated. Apple describes how it could animate bodies of water, reflection on building etc. in some embodiments.

Map Element React to Sound Captured by Microphone

Apple also explains how the animations can present differently depending on different kinds of device inputs like touch, gestures, motion and audio. For example, one could be viewing a map with water which seems still but on tapping the side of the device could cause it to ripple.

 Moreover blowing into the microphone could result in rolling waves. A blow or a motion could cause the wind to move foliage and trees. To improve the illusion, water with other map assets could be animated based on motion, with waves forming whenever a user tends to shift the position, orientation or tilt the iPhone. Apple has defined a system wherein map element tend to react to sound captured by an on-board microphone.

Moreover, on treating bodies of water as light source, the building as well as the surrounding static surfaces could come alive with real time reflections. Apple has also offered foliage as a second element rime for animation together with swaying trees and leaves which are activated by gestures, motion or any other input by the user.

Functional Add-Ons – Latest Transit Navigation in iOS 9

The manuscript provides details on technical consideration and the potential rollout scenarios utilising the prevailing hardware system. Apple’s plans in implementing a comprehensive Flyover animation engine, is not clear, a process which had been partly started with moving landmarks such as London’s Big Ben clock tower together with the nearby London Eye Ferris Wheel.

Presently it seems that the Maps development team seem to be focusing on functional add-ons, which is the latest transit navigation in iOS 9.Apple had patented a new system wherein it could use 3D Touch in the future and though it has not mentioned 3D Touch specifically, it is clear how the latest technology would enable this without doing away with the traditional single tap that would prevail in being used for other things.

Apple’s animated 3D maps patents were originally filed in March 2013 and credits Patrick S. Piemonte, Erik Anders Mikaeol Adlers and Christopher Blumenberg as its inventors. Just as the other patents, it should not be considered as a guarantee of things to come. But it seems like this would be an excessive enhancement to 3D Flyover and would be great with 3D Touch.

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