Running on the iOS Treadmill

Apple’s new retina display iPad necessitated a change in iOS app development: icons have to be even bigger to account for the high resolution! The new maximum icon size is now 1024 x 1024 pixels, the height of a non-retina iPad screen. When I made the Anthropomotron icons, I didn’t account for any future demand for higher resolution graphics, so I made them at 256 x 256 pixels. The problem is that making that image larger would make it look extremely blurry. I decided to remake the icon from its base components so it would be super sharp in 1024 x 1024.

Here is what a section of the original image looks like when it’s blown up to 1024 x 1024. Notice how the centimeter marks are blurry, as is everything else, really.


The blurriness comes from the textures, which did not enlarge well. The shapes that bounded each of the elements were fine so I just replaced all of the textures (bone, metal, centimeter markings, and ruler) and recolored them to match the original. This took one night of work, mixed in with some Diablo 3.


{ So much sharper! }


The background grid was sharpened a little within Photoshop but I kept them blurrier so the whole image didn’t look so busy. Overall I’m happy with the result. I did a better job with the femur texture than in the first time around. While not completely anatomically accurate, it does fit a lot better.

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