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PixelCanvas.io downloader

This utility lets you download the https://pixelcanvas.io bitmap and export regions of it to .png files.


pip install -r requirements.txt


This tool is run from the command line, where you provide the coordinates you want to download and render.

The format for typing coordinates is UPPERLEFT--LOWERRIGHT. The format for each of those pieces is X.Y.

Sometimes, argparse gets confused by negative coordinates because it thinks you're trying to provide another argument. Sorry. If this happens, use a tilde ~ as the negative sign instead.

Remember, because this is an image, up and left are negative; down and right are positive.


  • update: Download chunks into the database.

    > pixelcanvas.py update ~100.~100--100.100

  • render: Export a region as PNG.

    > pixelcanvas.py render 0.0--100.100 <flags>

So, for example:

> pixelcanvas.py update 0.0--100.100
> pixelcanvas.py update ~100.~100--100.100
> pixelcanvas.py update ~1200.300--~900.600

> pixelcanvas.py render 0.0--100.100
> pixelcanvas.py render ~1200.300--~900.600 --show
> pixelcanvas.py render ~2000.2000--2000.2000 --scale 0.25

To do

Here are some things we might like to improve:

  • Some way to get a statistics overview or visual map of which chunks we have in the database, so we know what we're missing.
  • Render the image as it appeared at some point in the past, taking advantage of the updated_at column.
  • Probably never going to happen: A GUI application to browse the db just like the site.