I was thinking how fascinated I was by the two-dimensional interfaces we use to create representations of three-dimensional objects. Which led me to wonder if you could use a one-dimensional interface to create a representation of a two-dimensional object.
My first reaction to that question was in the negative, but the more I thought about I realized that was wrong. Let’s think about our 2D interface, it could be as simple as a sketch on paper or a 3D software program like Maya. When we’re creating our 3D object, we can never see the opposite side. We have to rotate it around if we want to plot points for that side of the object. Well, the same thing holds for our 1D interface. Granted, we’ll be viewing our 2D objects along the side, but we can rotate them around in our single dimension to each side, and plot our points as we arrive at the pertinent side.
I’ve never heard of a 1D tool used to create 2D objects, but then I realized why. While we can see 2D objects, we don’t live in a 2D world. If you did – imagine yourself as a single point on a 2D plane – you would never visualize a square as we do in the 3D world, because that’s a 3D interpretation of a 2D object. From a 2D perspective, you would see only lines and points surrounding you. So, for a 2D creature, a 1D tool would be quite useful.