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Fast interactive graphics

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  • Subject: [mg77485] Fast interactive graphics
  • From: "Steve Luttrell" <steve at>
  • Date: Sun, 10 Jun 2007 07:19:01 -0400 (EDT)
  • Organization: Customer of PlusNet plc (

In version 6 I want to do interactive graphics where I use a controller to 
manipulate the shape of a curved 2-dimensional manifold (for instance). This 
is a type of interaction with Mathematica that should be of interest to lots 
of people.

The main problem that I have is that the redraw time after each controller 
movement is quite long. I need continuous feedback so that I can immediately 
see the effect of making various controller movements, so using 
ContinuousAction->False in Manipulate (for instance) doesn't solve this 
problem. I have tried various shortcuts such as skeletonising the graphic 
during updates so that it redraws quicker, but it is still too slow, and 
will get worse for the more complicated graphics that I really want to work 

As a general solution it would be great if it was possible to control the 
redrawing of graphics so that only those parts that need to be redrawn are 
actually redrawn, with the user taking responsibility for any consequential 
errors in the accumulated graphics rendering. Here I don't want to simply 
zoom the graphic to limit the rendered region, because I want to 
interactively see the impact of my manipulations in the context of the whole 

Does anyone know a way of imposing this type of control (see above) on 
graphics rendering, or is it not actually possible in Mathematica? I think 
the answer is no, but I just want to make sure that I haven't overlooked a 
trick here.

Steve Luttrell
West Malvern, UK 

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