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Digital picture converted to string art patterns (artof01.com)
101 points by gus_massa on Mar 19, 2017 | hide | past | web | favorite | 24 comments

Probably more interesting to HN readers is this blog post describing an algorithm for doing this:


This is super cool.

I wonder if you could convert it to colour as well, if you changed the rule from a single thread for the whole thing to three threads for the whole thing (CMY). Might be quite an interesting effect since you'd need to sort of "smudge" colours across the image the same way you're essentially smudging the blacks.

Edit: Wait a minute, actually it wouldn't work because you can't combine colours. Put magenta thread on top of cyan and you'd get... magenta.

You might be able to run the algorithm once on each color component.

I wonder how much better a less greedy algorithm would be-- e.g. one that considered many possible moves a few positions deep, and took one step towards the best... or one that after finishing unwrapped the beginning halfway and rewrapped it backwards from the middle, then unwrapped the end, and rewrapped it forwards from the middle, and repeated until convergence.

Super cool! But that's not knitting, and the circle isn't what most would consider to be a loom, either.

EDIT: Ok, it's a knitting loom (not a weaving loom), but the artist still isn't "knitting" using it.

I'd guess that the calculations are essentially a reverse radon transformation. Each string should be analogous to the sensor reading for a cat scan of a density field matching the portrait.

I didn't see it mentioned, but I assume you have to do it with a single unbroken string, so it's a bit more involved maybe. I'd imagine you'd first generate all the lines that best approximate the image, then insert additional lines to turn it into one unbroken string where they're least disruptive.

Kinda like the radon transform [1] used in tomography.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radon_transform

> Over 2 billion calculations are needed to produce each pattern; not much of a load for today’s computers, but definitely an impossible task for the human brain. So, this is a new and unique type of knitting that could not have been implemented a few decades ago, without computers.

It's hard to take this assertion at face value. Compare that to what a human go player can do vs. a computer. (2 billion computations would be on the order of seconds on a normal computer)

Still a cool project!

Reminds me of this (automated nail/string art based on photos):


That example timelapse is really cool! Great idea.

Is the program to dictate how to thread these available anywhere? I'd like to try doing my own!

How come vimeo became the site for artsy videos?

I expect it was due getting early traction with indie filmmakers, particularly through its early support for high-definition videos.


also maybe the uncluttered interface

I wouldn't comment except that the OP's comment history here is also highly critical, so: they already posted this like 8 months ago. It's also not knitting as most people understand the term. I mean, it's kinda neat, but the title here is misleading, and it's the second time they've used it. Promotional?

By no means! We invited gus_massa to repost it. This is part of our ongoing experiments in recovering good stories that fell through the cracks the first time round—described at https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=11662380 and many other posts linked from there.

Also, it's fine to repost a story if it's good for HN and hasn't had attention yet. Otherwise too many great submissions would languish unseen. This is important enough to be in HN's FAQ: https://news.ycombinator.com/newsfaq.html.

I see. I think an indicator like "[repost]" might cut down on the number of times you'd have to explain it. :)

And it's still a bad title given the content.

Putting [repost] would probably have an impact on the vote ratio up and down given that in many online communities 'repost' is seen as a negative thing perhaps.

Maybe [invited repost]?

If you can suggest a more accurate and neutral title we'd be happy to change it. It doesn't seem misleading to me at all, but I know nothing about knitting.

Digital picture converted to string art patterns.

Ok, we'll use that. Hope it's not too late to appease the knitting community.

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