Being inspired by the Ted Talk - Mathematics is the sense you never knew you had by Eddie Woo, we believe Snapchat AR provides just the way for anyone to experience Math.
What it does
Students can input mathematical formulas and the filter will turn them into immersive 3D visualizations in AR mode. For example, when the input is "log xpow2+ypow2 0.5", the result formula is z = log(x^2+y^2)*0.5
They can walk around the space and explore the 3D structures of different formulas, which not only can raise their interests, but also enhance their memories on the subjects.
It’s a combination of art, mathematics and technology.
How we built it
We started with the Keyboard Template provided by the Lens Studio. We experimented with different ways to parse mathematical formulas from strings and dynamically position the spheres in the space accordingly.
Fortunately, Lens Studio is a very powerful tool which provides great flexibility for us to experiment on things. We are particularly impressed by the effect of using camera texture as the reflection of the spheres.
Challenges we ran into
The very low frame rate at the beginning was definitely disappointing. We later figured out that the memory usage can be greatly reduced by instantiating prefabs, and we were very satisfied with the smooth experiences in the end.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
The sphere clusters generated from some formulas turned out to be very artistic, like sculptures. We took many cool photos from the filter and shared them.
Perhaps, art is just so deeply intertwined with mathematics. We are particularly proud of being able to demonstrate the aesthetic side of mathematics through technology.
What we learned
We learnt quite a lot of 3D rendering concepts while experimenting with the effects in Lens Studio, as well as some coding skills in AR.
What's next for SnapMath
We would like to support visualizations of more mathematical concepts such as complex number and power factor of z