Inspector Spacetime

from Google SUMux Motion Design

Sketch2AE download

Inject motion specs into reference video to become an engineer’s best friend

Specs are a necessary part of communicating UX to engineering. It's often difficult and time consuming to deliver the data required to replicate motion on device. With Inspector Spacetime you can generate this data alongside the reference quicktime, with just one click.

Built by Adam Plouff for the SUMux Motion Design Team at Google.


The script is open source and also available on GitHub.

  1. Download the .jsx file
  2. Close After Effects
  3. Drag the downloaded script file into Applications > Adobe After Effects [version number] > Scripts > ScriptUI Panels
  4. Fire up After Effects again
  5. Navigate to the Window menu up top. At the bottom you'll see InspectorSpacetime_[version number].jsx



Select a pair or several pairs of keyframes and click the giant button. These keyframe values will be collected within a floating panel and may be copied out as text or added to a renderable blue side panel in a duplicate comp.

Pastable Text

Selected keyframe pairs are now added to the property list as plain text. Additional keys may be added to the list and the overall duration and delay of each key pair will update.

Note: Live text is dead– as of v2.1, the live text panel has been removed because it was a major pain to get useable data out with all those expressions.

Sharable Data

  • Layer name
  • Property name
  • Delay time (live value)
  • Duration of keyframe pair
  • Value change
  • Cubic Bezier interpolation curve


  • May be coordinates or distance
  • 3X is the default DP for working at 1080x1920


Isolation Layer

If it's hard to see what's being spec'd, you can grey out the layers below what you want to focus on. To isolate layers, click to add an isolation adjustment layer and drag it below your focused layers.

Time Counter

Created with every spec, a counter is also available as its own layer. Create a millisecond counter with a defined start and end point. Start the timer at the beginning of the transition to easily illustrate the global start time.


One element is often known by multiple names, which can be confusing. Click the pointer button to draw lines between spec data and visual elements.

Why the dumb name?

Named after the Doctor Who parody from the underrated NBC comedy Community. It was a really great show.

Inspector Spacetime. It's a bad pun. But I'm a dad. I can't help it.

— Adam