SummerCode SummerCode - 22 days ago 11
iOS Question

how to make a parallel bezier curve heuristically

I have only found this blog with a relevant answer http://seant23.wordpress.com/2010/11/12/offset-bezier-curves/ ,but unfortunately i don't know the language and can't understand the maths behind it. What i need is to know how to make a bezier curve parallel to the one that i have.

I have a Point, Segment and Path class, but i don't understand how to divide the path into segments.
The Point class has the CGPoint location public variable,
the Segment class has as properties 4 points, Point *control1, *control2, *point2 and*point1;
the Path class contains an NSMutableArray of segments and a Point startPoint.

I am new to objective c and i would really appreciate some help, if not for my specific class construction, at least for a more general method.

Rob Rob
Answer

I don't know about the specific problem you're solving, but one cute (and very easy) solution is to just render the outline outline of a bezier curve, e.g.:

outline of bezier curve

This is easily done using Core Graphics (in this case, a drawRect of a UIView subclass):

- (void)drawRect:(CGRect)rect {
    CGPathRef path = [self newBezierPath];
    CGPathRef outlinePath = CGPathCreateCopyByStrokingPath(path, NULL, 10, kCGLineCapButt, kCGLineJoinBevel, 0);

    CGContextRef context = UIGraphicsGetCurrentContext();
    CGContextSetLineWidth(context, 3.0);
    CGContextAddPath(context, outlinePath);
    CGContextSetStrokeColorWithColor(context, [[UIColor redColor] CGColor]);
    CGContextDrawPath(context, kCGPathStroke);

    CGPathRelease(path);
    CGPathRelease(outlinePath);
}

- (CGPathRef)newBezierPath {
    CGPoint point1 = CGPointMake(10.0, 50.0);
    CGPoint point2 = CGPointMake(self.bounds.size.width - 10.0, point1.y + 150.0);

    CGPoint controlPoint1 = CGPointMake(point1.x + 400.0, point1.y);
    CGPoint controlPoint2 = CGPointMake(point2.x - 400.0, point2.y);

    CGMutablePathRef path = CGPathCreateMutable();
    CGPathMoveToPoint(path, NULL, point1.x, point1.y);
    CGPathAddCurveToPoint(path, NULL, controlPoint1.x, controlPoint1.y, controlPoint2.x, controlPoint2.y, point2.x, point2.y);

    return path;
}

Or in Swift 3:

override func draw(_ rect: CGRect) {
    let path = bezierPath().cgPath
    let outlinePath = path.copy(strokingWithWidth: 10, lineCap: .butt, lineJoin: .bevel, miterLimit: 0)

    let context = UIGraphicsGetCurrentContext()!
    context.setLineWidth(3)
    context.addPath(outlinePath)
    context.setStrokeColor(UIColor.red.cgColor)
    context.strokePath()
}

private func bezierPath() -> UIBezierPath {
    let point1 = CGPoint(x: 10.0, y: 50.0)
    let point2 = CGPoint(x: bounds.size.width - 10.0, y: point1.y + 150.0)

    let controlPoint1 = CGPoint(x: point1.x + 400.0, y: point1.y)
    let controlPoint2 = CGPoint(x: point2.x - 400.0, y: point2.y)

    let path = UIBezierPath()
    path.move(to: point1)
    path.addCurve(to: point2, controlPoint1: controlPoint1, controlPoint2: controlPoint2)

    return path
}

If you really want to draw a parallel path, that's more complicated. But you can render something like this (original bezier path in red, a "parallel" line in blue).

enter image description here

I'm not entirely sure about the algorithm you've identified, but I rendered this by

  • calculating the bezier points (the red path) myself, breaking it up finely enough to make the effect smooth;
  • calculate the angle between each point and the next;
  • calculate the coordinates of the offset path (the blue one) by taking the points on the bezier path, and calculating new points that are perpendicular to the angle I just determined; and
  • using those offset point coordinates, draw a new series of line segments to render the parallel line to the bezier.

Thus, in Objective-C, that might look like:

- (void)drawRect:(CGRect)rect {
    CGPoint point1 = CGPointMake(10.0, 50.0);
    CGPoint point2 = CGPointMake(self.bounds.size.width - 10.0, point1.y + 150.0);

    CGPoint controlPoint1 = CGPointMake(point1.x + 400.0, point1.y);
    CGPoint controlPoint2 = CGPointMake(point2.x - 400.0, point2.y);

    // draw original bezier path in red

    [[UIColor redColor] setStroke];

    [[self bezierPathFromPoint1:point1
                         point2:point2
                  controlPoint1:controlPoint1
                  controlPoint2:controlPoint2] stroke];

    // calculate and draw offset bezier curve in blue

    [[UIColor blueColor] setStroke];

    [[self offsetBezierPathBy:10.0
                       point1:point1
                       point2:point2
                controlPoint1:controlPoint1
                controlPoint2:controlPoint2] stroke];
}

- (UIBezierPath *)bezierPathFromPoint1:(CGPoint)point1
                                point2:(CGPoint)point2
                         controlPoint1:(CGPoint)controlPoint1
                         controlPoint2:(CGPoint)controlPoint2 {
    UIBezierPath *path = [UIBezierPath bezierPath];

    [path moveToPoint:point1];
    [path addCurveToPoint:point2 controlPoint1:controlPoint1 controlPoint2:controlPoint2];

    return path;
}

- (UIBezierPath *)offsetBezierPathBy:(CGFloat)offset
                              point1:(CGPoint)point1
                              point2:(CGPoint)point2
                       controlPoint1:(CGPoint)controlPoint1
                       controlPoint2:(CGPoint)controlPoint2 {
    UIBezierPath *path = [UIBezierPath bezierPath];
    static NSInteger numberOfPoints = 100;

    CGPoint previousPoint = [self cubicBezierAtTime:0.0
                                             point1:point1
                                             point2:point2
                                      controlPoint1:controlPoint1
                                      controlPoint2:controlPoint2];
    CGPoint point;
    double angle;

    for (NSInteger i = 1; i <= numberOfPoints; i++) {
        double t = (double) i / numberOfPoints;

        point = [self cubicBezierAtTime:t
                                 point1:point1
                                 point2:point2
                          controlPoint1:controlPoint1
                          controlPoint2:controlPoint2];

        // calculate the angle to the offset point
        // this is the angle between the two points, plus 90 degrees (pi / 2.0)

        angle = atan2(point.y - previousPoint.y, point.x - previousPoint.x) + M_PI_2;


        if (i == 1)
            [path moveToPoint:[self offsetPoint:previousPoint by:offset angle:angle]];

        previousPoint = point;
        [path addLineToPoint:[self offsetPoint:previousPoint by:offset angle:angle]];
    }

    return path;
}

// return point offset by particular distance and particular angle

- (CGPoint)offsetPoint:(CGPoint)point by:(CGFloat)offset angle:(double)angle {
    return CGPointMake(point.x + cos(angle) * offset, point.y + sin(angle) * offset);
}

// Manually calculate cubic bezier curve
//
// B(t) = (1-t)^3 * point1 + 3 * (1-t)^2 * t controlPoint1 + 3 * (1-t) * t^2 * pointPoint2 + t^3 * point2

- (CGPoint)cubicBezierAtTime:(double)t
                      point1:(CGPoint)point1
                      point2:(CGPoint)point2
               controlPoint1:(CGPoint)controlPoint1
               controlPoint2:(CGPoint)controlPoint2 {
    double oneMinusT = 1.0 - t;
    double oneMinusTSquared = oneMinusT * oneMinusT;
    double oneMinusTCubed = oneMinusTSquared * oneMinusT;

    double tSquared = t * t;
    double tCubed = tSquared * t;

    CGFloat x = point1.x * oneMinusTCubed +
    3.0 * oneMinusTSquared * t * controlPoint1.x +
    3.0 * oneMinusT * tSquared * controlPoint2.x +
    tCubed * point2.x;
    CGFloat y = point1.y * oneMinusTCubed +
    3.0 * oneMinusTSquared * t * controlPoint1.y +
    3.0 * oneMinusT * tSquared * controlPoint2.y +
    tCubed * point2.y;

    return CGPointMake(x, y);
}

Or, in Swift 3:

override func draw(_ rect: CGRect) {
    let point1 = CGPoint(x: 10.0, y: 50.0)
    let point2 = CGPoint(x: bounds.size.width - 10.0, y: point1.y + 150.0)

    let controlPoint1 = CGPoint(x: point1.x + 400.0, y: point1.y)
    let controlPoint2 = CGPoint(x: point2.x - 400.0, y: point2.y)

    UIColor.red.setStroke()
    bezierPath(from: point1, to: point2, withControl: controlPoint1, and: controlPoint2).stroke()

    UIColor.blue.setStroke()
    offSetBezierPath(by: 5, from: point1, to: point2, withControl: controlPoint1, and: controlPoint2).stroke()
}

private func bezierPath(from point1: CGPoint, to point2: CGPoint, withControl controlPoint1: CGPoint, and controlPoint2:CGPoint) -> UIBezierPath {
    let path = UIBezierPath()

    path.move(to: point1)
    path.addCurve(to: point2, controlPoint1: controlPoint1, controlPoint2: controlPoint2)

    return path
}

private func offSetBezierPath(by offset: CGFloat, from point1: CGPoint, to point2: CGPoint, withControl controlPoint1: CGPoint, and controlPoint2:CGPoint) -> UIBezierPath {
    let path = UIBezierPath()

    let numberOfPoints = 100

    var previousPoint = cubicBezier(at: 0, point1: point1, point2: point2, controlPoint1: controlPoint1, controlPoint2: controlPoint2)

    for i in 1 ... numberOfPoints {
        let time = CGFloat(i) / CGFloat(numberOfPoints)
        let point = cubicBezier(at: time, point1: point1, point2: point2, controlPoint1: controlPoint1, controlPoint2: controlPoint2)

        // calculate the angle to the offset point
        // this is the angle between the two points, plus 90 degrees (pi / 2.0)

        let angle = atan2(point.y - previousPoint.y, point.x - previousPoint.x) + .pi / 2;

        if i == 1 {
            path.move(to: calculateOffset(of: previousPoint, by: offset, angle: angle))
        }

        previousPoint = point
        path.addLine(to: calculateOffset(of: previousPoint, by: offset, angle: angle))
    }

    return path
}

/// Return point offset by particular distance and particular angle
///
/// - Parameters:
///   - point: Point to offset.
///   - offset: How much to offset by.
///   - angle: At what angle.
///
/// - Returns: New `CGPoint`.

private func calculateOffset(of point: CGPoint, by offset: CGFloat, angle: CGFloat) -> CGPoint {
    return CGPoint(x: point.x + cos(angle) * offset, y: point.y + sin(angle) * offset)
}

/// Manually calculate cubic bezier curve
///
/// B(t) = (1-t)^3 * point1 + 3 * (1-t)^2 * t controlPoint1 + 3 * (1-t) * t^2 * pointPoint2 + t^3 * point2
///
/// - Parameters:
///   - time:          Time, a value between zero and one.
///   - point1:        Starting point.
///   - point2:        Ending point.
///   - controlPoint1: First control point.
///   - controlPoint2: Second control point.
///
/// - Returns: Point on bezier curve.

private func cubicBezier(at time: CGFloat, point1: CGPoint, point2: CGPoint, controlPoint1: CGPoint, controlPoint2: CGPoint) -> CGPoint {
    let oneMinusT = 1.0 - time
    let oneMinusTSquared = oneMinusT * oneMinusT
    let oneMinusTCubed = oneMinusTSquared * oneMinusT

    let tSquared = time * time
    let tCubed = tSquared * time

    var x = point1.x * oneMinusTCubed
    x += 3.0 * oneMinusTSquared * time * controlPoint1.x
    x += 3.0 * oneMinusT * tSquared * controlPoint2.x
    x += tCubed * point2.x

    var y = point1.y * oneMinusTCubed
    y += 3.0 * oneMinusTSquared * time * controlPoint1.y
    y += 3.0 * oneMinusT * tSquared * controlPoint2.y
    y += tCubed * point2.y

    return CGPoint(x: x, y: y)
}
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