ShapeToolbox manualΒΆ

ShapeToolbox is a collection of Octave/Matlab functions for generating 3D models of various shapes and saving them in the Wavefront .obj-file format. The shapes available include spheres, planes, cylinders, tori, as well as surfaces or revolution and extrusions based on user-defined shape profiles.

These shapes can be further perturbed by different kinds of modulation: sinusoidal and filtered noise components allow for parametric modulation of the shapes. Gaussian bumps or other, custom, user-defined surface perturbations can also be used to modulate the shape.

The main purpose of ShapeToolbox is to provide a tool for producing controlled stimulus sets for experiments in visual perception and cognition. The target audience is thus psychophysisists, neuroscientists, and experimental psychologists; but anyone who might find the tools useful is welcome to use and build on them.

The range of base shapes is limited to a handful of simple shapes, but the options for modulation can result in very complex shapes. However, ShapeToolbox is not a general-purpose 3D-modeling software with which you can create arbitrary or real-world stimuli such as houses and faces. Nor is it a rendering tool: after creating the models with ShapeToolbox, you have to render them using a rendering engine to create 2D images.

For examples of the shapes you can produce with ShapeToolbox, along with the code to produce them, have a look at the Gallery. For the impatient, this might be the best way to get started—look at the examples and start modifying them.

For more complete projects and step-by-step instructions, there is the Tutorials section. For anyone patient enough to have read this far, just start from the beginning, or maybe in the Getting started with ShapeToolbox section.