How to optimize moves

The option you likely want is called Flood Fill, but there’s a caveat: it’s almost always the wrong thing to use. I’ll explain:

Standard raster scanning moves left to right, bottom to top (or top to bottom), in a smooth, continuous motion, resulting in very even output.

Flood fill, or what you call intelligent fill, scans portions of the shape surrounded by whitespace, then moves to a different portion and fills that, and so on. The jumping around means that you rarely move bottom to top continuously, and sometimes will stop in the middle of one part of the image and move to a different part, then come back and finish.

If the machine has any looseness or play in the mechanical system at all, you’ll get gaps or overlaps in the output where things don’t quite line up.

It’s also worth stating that it really only helps very slow systems. If you are moving at moderate speed, it nearly always takes less time to continue in the current direction than it does to change direction. If you fill a narrow vertical line, for example, you spend much time slowing down and speeding up than you do actually engraving.

The best possible use case for Flood fill is something like this:

The design is simple, and dominated by empty space. The dragon in your GIF, unless you make it really large, is mostly filled space, and would probably gain more from using fast whitespace scanning than flood fill.

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