ptoinson - 6 months ago 103

iOS Question

I'm developing some code using SceneKit on iOS and in my code I want to determine the x and y coordinates on the global z plane where z is 0.0 and x and y are determined from a tap gesture. MY setup is as follows:

`override func viewDidLoad() {`

super.viewDidLoad()

// create a new scene

let scene = SCNScene()

// create and add a camera to the scene

let cameraNode = SCNNode()

let camera = SCNCamera()

cameraNode.camera = camera

scene.rootNode.addChildNode(cameraNode)

// place the camera

cameraNode.position = SCNVector3(x: 0, y: 0, z: 15)

// create and add an ambient light to the scene

let ambientLightNode = SCNNode()

ambientLightNode.light = SCNLight()

ambientLightNode.light.type = SCNLightTypeAmbient

ambientLightNode.light.color = UIColor.darkGrayColor()

scene.rootNode.addChildNode(ambientLightNode)

let triangleNode = SCNNode()

triangleNode.geometry = defineTriangle();

scene.rootNode.addChildNode(triangleNode)

// retrieve the SCNView

let scnView = self.view as SCNView

// set the scene to the view

scnView.scene = scene

// configure the view

scnView.backgroundColor = UIColor.blackColor()

// add a tap gesture recognizer

let tapGesture = UITapGestureRecognizer(target: self, action: "handleTap:")

let gestureRecognizers = NSMutableArray()

gestureRecognizers.addObject(tapGesture)

scnView.gestureRecognizers = gestureRecognizers

}

func handleTap(gestureRecognize: UIGestureRecognizer) {

// retrieve the SCNView

let scnView = self.view as SCNView

// check what nodes are tapped

let p = gestureRecognize.locationInView(scnView)

// get the camera

var camera = scnView.pointOfView.camera

// screenZ is percentage between z near and far

var screenZ = Float((15.0 - camera.zNear) / (camera.zFar - camera.zNear))

var scenePoint = scnView.unprojectPoint(SCNVector3Make(Float(p.x), Float(p.y), screenZ))

println("tapPoint: (\(p.x), \(p.y)) scenePoint: (\(scenePoint.x), \(scenePoint.y), \(scenePoint.z))")

}

func defineTriangle() -> SCNGeometry {

// Vertices

var vertices:[SCNVector3] = [

SCNVector3Make(-2.0, -2.0, 0.0),

SCNVector3Make(2.0, -2.0, 0.0),

SCNVector3Make(0.0, 2.0, 0.0)

]

let vertexData = NSData(bytes: vertices, length: vertices.count * sizeof(SCNVector3))

var vertexSource = SCNGeometrySource(data: vertexData,

semantic: SCNGeometrySourceSemanticVertex,

vectorCount: vertices.count,

floatComponents: true,

componentsPerVector: 3,

bytesPerComponent: sizeof(Float),

dataOffset: 0,

dataStride: sizeof(SCNVector3))

// Normals

var normals:[SCNVector3] = [

SCNVector3Make(0.0, 0.0, 1.0),

SCNVector3Make(0.0, 0.0, 1.0),

SCNVector3Make(0.0, 0.0, 1.0)

]

let normalData = NSData(bytes: normals, length: normals.count * sizeof(SCNVector3))

var normalSource = SCNGeometrySource(data: normalData,

semantic: SCNGeometrySourceSemanticNormal,

vectorCount: normals.count,

floatComponents: true,

componentsPerVector: 3,

bytesPerComponent: sizeof(Float),

dataOffset: 0,

dataStride: sizeof(SCNVector3))

// Indexes

var indices:[CInt] = [0, 1, 2]

var indexData = NSData(bytes: indices, length: sizeof(CInt) * indices.count)

var indexElement = SCNGeometryElement(

data: indexData,

primitiveType: .Triangles,

primitiveCount: 1,

bytesPerIndex: sizeof(CInt)

)

var geo = SCNGeometry(sources: [vertexSource, normalSource], elements: [indexElement])

// material

var material = SCNMaterial()

material.diffuse.contents = UIColor.redColor()

material.doubleSided = true

material.shininess = 1.0;

geo.materials = [material];

return geo

}

As you can see. I have a triangle that is 4 units tall by 4 units wide and set on the z plane (z = 0) centered at x, y (0.0, 0.0). The camera is the default SCNCamera which looks in the negative z direction and I've placed it at (0, 0, 15). The default value for zNear and zFar are 1.0 and 100.0 respectively. In my handleTap method, I take the x and y screen coordinates of the tap and attempt to find the x and y global scene coordinates where z = 0.0. I'm using a call to unprojectPoint.

The docs for unprojectPoint indicate

Unprojecting a point whose z-coordinate is 0.0 returns a point on the

near clipping plane; unprojecting a point whose z-coordinate is 1.0

returns a point on the far clipping plane.

While it does not specifically say that for the points in between there is a liner relationship between the near and far plane, I have made that assumption and calculate the value of screenZ to be the percent distance between the near and far plane that the z = 0 plane is located. To check my answer, I can click near the corners of the triangle because I know where they are in global coordinates.

My problem is that I'm not getting the correct values and I'm not getting consistent values when I start changing the zNear and zFar clipping planes on the camera. So my question is, how can I do do this? In the end, I'm going to create a new piece of geometry and place it on the z-plane corresponding to where the user clicked.

Thanks in advance for your help.

Answer

Typical depth buffers in a 3D graphics pipeline are not linear. Perspective division causes depths in normalized device coordinates to be on a different scale. (See also here.)

So the z-coordinate you're feeding into `unprojectPoint`

isn't actually the one you want.

How, then, to find the normalized-depth coordinate matching a plane in world space? Well, it helps if that plane is orthogonal to the camera -- which yours is. Then all you need to do is project a point on that plane:

```
let projectedOrigin = gameView.projectPoint(SCNVector3Zero)
```

Now you have the location of the world origin in 3D view + normalized-depth space. To map other points in 2D view space onto this plane, use the z-coordinate from this vector:

```
let vp = gestureRecognizer.locationInView(scnView)
let vpWithZ = SCNVector3(x: vp.x, y: vp.y, z: projectedOrigin.z)
let worldPoint = gameView.unprojectPoint(vpWithZ)
```

This gets you a point in world space that maps the click/tap location to the z = 0 plane, suitable for use as the `position`

of a node if you want to show that location to the user.

(Note that this approach works only as long as you're mapping onto a plane that's perpendicular to the camera's view direction. If you want to map view coordinates onto a differently-oriented surface, the normalized-depth value in `vpWithZ`

won't be constant.)