I'm animating a sprite in 2D with key frames of rotation and xy-positions.
I've recently had a discussion with someone saying that when the device (happens to be an iPad using cocos2D) hits a performance bump due to whatever else the user may be doing, lag will arise and that the best way to fight it is to not use actual positions, but velocities, accelerations and torques with kinematics. His message is to evaluate the positions and rotations from these speeds at the current point in time.
I've never experienced a situation where I've heard of using kinematics to stem lag in 2D animations and am not sure of how effective it could be. Also, it seems to be overkill.
The application is not networked so it's all running on a local device. The desired effect is that the animation always plays as closely as it can to the target frame rate.
Wouldn't the technique suffer the same problems as just using the time since the last frame or a fixed time step since the kinematics would also require some time value to perform the calculation?
What techniques could you suggest to best achieve the desired effect?
Thank you for your responses, they are very illuminating. I want to clarify my question before choosing an answer however, to make sure that this post really serves it's purpose.
I have a sprite of a ball, and a text file with 3 arrays worth of information (rotation,translations x, translations y) with each unit of information existing as a key frame to be stepped through (0 to 49 and back to 0 to replay it again). I have this playing by interpolating from the current key frame to the next, every n-units of time. The animation is visibly correct when compared to a video I was given of it, and it is smooth because of the interpolations between the key frames. This is the existing state of the project.
There are no physics simulated, only a static animation of a ball moving in a way an artist specifically designed.
Should I, instead of rotation in degrees and translations by positions in space, derive velocities, accelerations and torques to express this static animation as a function of time? As in, position now = foo(time now), where foo uses kinematics.