Vector design SDK and Web API
The Astute Graphics Tech is a vector design Software Development Kit, an SDK. In software, SDKs are one of the core reasons new products and services can be developed in such a short timeframe. An SDK is an essential building block that can simply be slotted into place and produce results instantly.
The AG Tech SDK is made of many individual vector design tool building blocks. These can be combined in infinite ways to produce industry standard tools or innovative new creative solutions.
We list the major AG Tech SDK vector functions on Vector Design Tool Technologies page. These include:
- Boolean (Join Shape)
- Path Offset
- Smart Point Removal
- Curve Fitting
- Variable Stroke Widths
- Vector Brushes
- Outline Stroke
How it benefits the developer and designer
To see how AG Tech can benefits every designer and user, we'll just focus on one of these blocks: Smart Point Removal
Smart Point Removal is relevant to every vector design-based workflow. It cleverly removes excess points along a vector path.
This optimization benefits every designer and industry, improving workflow and boosting creativity:
- Makes artwork humanly editable
- Speeds up animation rendering
- Reduces file size and complexity
- Optimizes artwork for manufacturing
Astute Graphics can provide this optimization in whatever environment and workflow is required. Remember, this is just one component of the entire AG Tech SDK.
Smart Point Removal already powers three commercial tools available from Astute Graphics (InkScribe, VectorScribe and VectorFirstAid). The flexibility of the technology means that each method gives the user the best experience based on the design tool it's added to.
In these tools, the SDK has been added to the software which is located on the user's device, be it Mac OS, Windows or mobile. The direct connection between the design software and the SDK allows for interactive feedback with the tools.
Web API access to the AG Tech
As the SDK is fully independent, it's possible to locate it practically anywhere. Including a web service – which is exactly what we've now done.
On top of the SDK, we've added a Web API. This API is an interface that allows for communication using simple commands.
In this case, the API allows other software, web services and automated systems to instantly benefit from the Smart Point Removal technology. Our first use of the new web API was to create a web service concept that simply optimises common SVG artwork files by applying Smart Point Removal.
This is set to become the basis of a new subscription-based service. It avoids the need to be tied to any particular design package.
By opening up the web API, we are also allowing all developers to instantly benefit from Astute Graphics' extensive world-class vector technology.
Adding AG Tech as an extension to design packages
To prove the flexibility of this approach, we developed a second proof-of-concept in next to no time. This is an extension for the popular Sketch app.
This very basic and open extension simply grabs the selected paths in the user's design and sends them to the AG Tech web service using the web API.
The AG Tech SDK running on the internet server performs its magic in a very short time to optimize the vector paths, removing unwanted points. Once it has finished processing the artwork, it returns the optimized paths which are used to update the Sketch document.
You can see this in action the Astute Graphics Tech SDK and Web API YouTube video.
The results are not only the best possible quality without causing visual shape distortion, but it's also very quick to process.
With the complex calculations also taking place in the cloud, the user's devices aren't held up or their batteries further drained in repetitive situations.
Astute Graphics will actively initiate this service within leading extendable applications by providing open plug-ins and extensions.
Third party development and open source
Astute Graphics will also promote and encourage third parties to start adding the world's most advanced vector SDK to their solutions allowing users to benefit instantly. For any experienced developer, adding Smart Point Removal through the web API should also prove to be a very quick task.
The initial extensions and plug-ins developed to access the AG Tech SDK through the new Web API will also be open sourced to allow developers to fully understand the simplicity of the mechanism.
Licensing the AG Tech
Designers can use Astute Graphics' extensive range of plug-ins for Adobe Illustrator today, several of which feature AG Tech.
Users will also be able to access the Astute Graphics web service later in 2018 through a new subscription model.
Developers can freely develop for the web API allowing their end users to simply subscribe to the Astute Graphics service. We plan to continuously extend the web API to give direct access to more of the AG Tech including Boolean operations, path offset and more.
Alternatively, the entire AG Tech SDK is available for licensing within corporate solutions. This gives the flexibility to deploy in the most suitable environment, be it on user's devices or your own web service.