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Anything I can do smarter in this 3D rotator?

Sahil test
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Go to solution Solved by OSUblake,

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This thread was started before GSAP 3 was released. Some information, especially the syntax, may be out of date for GSAP 3. Please see the GSAP 3 migration guide and release notes for more information about how to update the code to GSAP 3's syntax. 

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I was trying to make a 3D rotator and it works as expected. I am using onUpdate callback to adjust z-index but I was wondering if there a smarter way to get it done?


Also this example only works with fixed width, I tried to make it responsive but timeline doesn't update values once it is created.

See the Pen qOqyrb by Sahil89 (@Sahil89) on CodePen

See the Pen wKorbr by Sahil89 (@Sahil89) on CodePen

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You can always scale the container on resize.


If you are going to do 3d using a z-index, there a several different ways to go about it. You could calculate the z value for each point on each face and then on your update callback you would sort the faces based on the their lowest z-value. That's how I did it in this demo... although SVGs don't have a z-index so I just appended the faces in that order.


See the Pen eNKYbG by osublake (@osublake) on CodePen


If all you are doing is a cube and using rotationY, then you could just make a list of the z-index values and then change the z-index on the faces every 45 degrees. All that matters is that the z-index of the faces you can see are higher than the ones in the back.


See the Pen 2dd7fe6825d3d3a54398906ef9c988e9 by osublake (@osublake) on CodePen

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Yep, when it comes to 3D, IE just doesn't support it.  You can do a bunch of complex math to try and emulate it on a 2D plane, or choose a much better browser. Luckily, Microsoft is moving most of their users to Edge, which does support 3D.

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Hello Gary,


Even though IE does not support transform-style: preserve-3d, but only flat. It does support 3D, you just have to animate each cube face separately. So instead of adding the perspective property on all the faces parent. You instead use the transform perspective  function.. i.e. transform: perspective(1000)  GSAP equivalent is transformPerspective


Cross browser 3D cube even in IE10 and above example:


See the Pen xiJLn by jonathan (@jonathan) on CodePen


Animating each face separately is tricky, but it is the only way to workaround IE not supporting the transform-style: preserve-3d  CSS property. GSAP equivalent is transformStyle



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Jonathan, thanks for the info and the example!


It would require a significant refactoring of ProStyle to support that and would circumvent the intrinsic layering.  I'm content with ProStyle not supporting 3D on IE (unless Microsoft every gets around to adding preserve-3d) especially since the majority of Windows users are moving to Edge.




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Hi Sahil,


Explaining how to do z-sorting in a forum post is kind of hard. I started out learning 3d from this book. The code is written for the canvas, but you can apply the same techniques to regular DOM elements. For that SVG demo, I modified some of the classes from this example, which basically requires you to convert every shape into a triangle using a Point3D class.




Here's the source code for that example





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Glad I could help out. If you can, thank the author of that book by buying it. It's by far the best animation book I've come across. It may be written for the canvas, but in the end it's all just JavaScript. With the help of GSAP, I've been able to recreate every single one of the canvas experiments listed on the book's homepage using regular DOM or SVG elements (of course this does not include some of the pixel rendering and video techniques in Chapter 4).

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