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 From:  Grendel
1944.1 
Just thought I'd throw out an idea for scene management(really looking forward to that). The idea is to have the standard interface you have now with the scene tree pane hidden. You click the Scene Tree button on bottom right of viewport and then it expands from the right toolbar. So this way if you have a simple scene and don't need management it does not add clutter other than one icon at the bottom right. It is scrollable(is that a word ;)) for big assemblies on the right of the panel. The square opens a color selector pop-up to change the items color. The circle would be a visibility button to toggle visibility. The tree would be a drag and drop nesting approach that is collapsible with the + boxes. Their is also another unused tab at the top of the panel( A nifty little ambient occlusion render or an HDRI preview render would be great but I know that is a ways off)


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 From:  Michael Gibson
1944.2 In reply to 1944.1 
Hi Grendel - pretty darn close to what I've been thinking about.

re: Color - one thing that I've been thinking is to have an object properties panel that shows up in the area where command options normally go (above the "Draw curve" palette, and below the open file name).

I was thinking of having color assignable to objects in that spot, rather than assigning it to a tag.

Assigning color by tags only is kind of problematic because I want to allow you to create different tags/groups and allow the same object to belong to potentially many different tags instead of only one.

Like take a car for example, maybe you might want to have one tag for "wheels" with 4 wheel objects assigned to it, and another tag for "Front of car" with all the front half of the car assigned to it including the front 2 wheels.

That would mean those front 2 wheels would belong to 2 different tags neither one of which was a child or totally subordinate set to the other.

Allowing this kind of multiple membership would open up a lot of flexibility I think but it also tends to make for some problems if you try to assign properties to a tag instead of to an object, like what if you assigned the "wheels" tag to have a color of blue, and then the "front of car" tag to have a color of red - what color should the 2 front wheels be, blue or red? They would have these kind of 2 inconsistent properties applied to them.

By applying properties at an object level instead of a tag level it should help to remove this kind of potential inconsistencies.

I think there is still a good chance to incorporate color into the tag browser UI still though just through some simple rules like maybe if all the objects that are under a tag are all the same color, the background of that tag will display in the browser UI as that color, stuff like that.


To assign a different color to a tag, you would click on the tag to select all objects in it, then go to the object properties panel to the right of it and assign the color to all those objects there.

Similarly hiding or showing a tag would be a shortcut for hiding or showing all the objects that belong to a tag - the actual tag itself would not have a hide/show property of its own but the UI for it could indicate in some way if all of the tag's objects are hidden or not and allow flipping them easily.


Any ideas/comments on the above?

- Michael
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 From:  DannyT (DANTAS)
1944.3 In reply to 1944.2 
Hi Michael,

When you refer to a 'tag' would that equate to a catagory?

.
~Danny~
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 From:  Michael Gibson
1944.4 In reply to 1944.3 
Hi Danny,

> When you refer to a 'tag' would that equate to a catagory?

Yeah, category, group, "named set", etc... - I mean a UI representation that is a container that can hold a list of objects or other containers underneath it, like for instance "Blue button" here:




I guess I could call that type of thing a "group" or a "layer", ... But it seems like those bring along some expectations of some particular kinds of behavior. I'd like to try and combine several of those kinds of functions together here so that's why a somewhat more neutral name like "tag" kind of seems good.


Some other ideas - I'm thinking of maybe calling this thing a "Browser" maybe instead of "Scene tree", just kind of a more compact label.

I'd figure that the top part of the browser would be have entries for custom tags that you have created to organize your objects into different groups/categories, and that there would be a built in tag called "All objects" underneath your custom ones that could be expanded to see the names of all objects in the entire model.

A tag can contain within it objects (which will be able to be named, the object name will show up there as a child of the tag when you expand the + next to the tag), or other tags to have a kind of hierarchy of containers.


These are just some of the current ideas and thinking...

- Michael
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 From:  Frenchy Pilou (PILOU)
1944.5 
Are you not limited on the first level by number of colors very distinct? Like 256 ?
A little schema will be a great help for understand the project of management objects ;)
Panel object must take the same place than the normal UI : when you use objects you don't modelise so no need to see normal UI;)
And surface of screen stay the same

EDITED: 6 Sep 2008 by PILOU

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 From:  Michael Gibson
1944.6 In reply to 1944.5 
Hi Pilou, do you mean you would prefer to have a limit of only 256 colors instead of any color?

I had not been planning on that, it seems like it would be nice for people to be able to choose any r,g,b color that they wanted instead of only a limited amount.

Of course it would be nice to have something like a set of swatches for a set of commonly used colors...


> Panel object must take the same place than the normal UI :
> when you use object you don't modelise ;)

I thought about this some, but it seems like there will be many cases where you could want to use the object list as an aid while in the middle of doing modeling operations, like for instance I would like to make it possible to select objects by using that browser panel. So it would be an alternate way to select objects to use as input to some command.

If it occupied the same place as the rest of the tools you would have to be switching back and forth between them in cases like that...

But it certainly would save a lot of UI space if they were in the same area... but with the panel in the separate space you would just close it if you were done working on it and that would have much of the same effect as having it in the same spot anyway it seems.


- Michael
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 From:  Marco (IOCOCOI)
1944.7 In reply to 1944.2 
hi there,

terrible interesting topic in general,..representing and managing data and structures. One might have a look at some of edward tuftes books an essays on this topic.

May be it would be a helpful thing, if people could describe the way they would use such a layer/tag-structure in their everyday work with MOI.

I would feel comfortable, if this system could imitate the rather traditional MATERIAL-ASSIGN-behaviour..so i would assign for instance aluminium to some unrelated parts..and to communicate certain functional details of a construction/object, i would use it mainly for/as ASSEMBLING GROUP..one problem might be, that there would be a need for an additional export-feature(dialog)..*export according to MATERIALS* or *export according to ASSEMBLY*, so that other 3d-applications could use the actual output, especially the rendering applications (hypershot, maxwell, fryrender..).

The visual representation might be a totally different matter. Maybe shifting from lets say DESIGNVIEW to ASSEMBLY-/TAGVIEW would be a solution..or just an on/off-switch-behaviour in the visual-appearance like thicker and coloured outlines(according to some scheme) of the TAG-ged objects..

I'm sure michael will make the right decision(s)..

best wishes,
marco

ps: maybe there is a way to incorporate some kind of a DESIGNREVIEW-feature with a reduced tool kit of pointers and speech bubbles for revision and presentation.
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 From:  Frenchy Pilou (PILOU)
1944.8 In reply to 1944.6 
I prefer not a limit but it's not easy to distinguish 2 yellows ;) so 256 is yet a big difficulty for a first level!
For example here from a true red : 88 colors gradations can be drawn : but between 2 side colors it's difficult to make difference ;)
And of course user can choose all what he wants :)
Some people are colour-blind or other things

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 From:  PaQ
1944.9 
Hello everyone,

@Grendel, really cool ui work, your tree match really the MoI interface, nice job !

As a personal input, even of this tree is really cool, I'm also looking for a less intrusive layer system that allow quickly manage a scene without any extra input from the user. Most of the time I don't care about the part names, color etc ... all I need is to easy way to hide/show part of my model ... or work on a part and show an other as a wireframe background etc ...



Here's the horrible lw interface :P ... on the upper right corner you have the layer system ... it's really small, but it allows all what I'm talking about.

-Complete colored square = active layer
- Half colored square = inactive layer, were objets can't be edited, but are still visible (in wireframe by default, but other shade mode might be usefull)
- A little dot mean there is an objet inside de layer.

With a traditionnal combo of shift/crtl key, is quite easy to manage larger scene allready, even if there is no name for the layers ... the benefit is a really tiny layer bar.

Of course I can understand that a more elaborate tree is also needed ;)

EDITED: 3 Feb 2010 by PAQ

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 From:  Grendel
1944.10 
For the grouping material properties it could go like this.

A single object has the color box enabled. If you group two objects then the color box has an X on the color box as default and keeps the childrens color boxes upon grouping. If you want to color all objects in the group then you must select the X'd out group material box, assign material, then the material is carried over to the children as well. If you then want to have one child different then go to it's material box and change it.

I'm really glad we're thwoing ideas around about about the interface, hopefully it can sprout some new ideas about what everyone like from other apps.
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 From:  okapi
1944.11 
I would vote for something similar to the very first post (and similar to the scene tree in C4d).
I also like the idea of a "scene tree" button to collapse the panel if you don't need it.

This would be quite clear to use for anyone coming from many Cad or 3d soft. backgrounds, but also for novices.


Please don't do cryptic buttons à la Lightwave, one of Moi's strengths so far has been its clarity.


One thing related to the scene management: it would be important to be able to export each group as a seperate group or object,
and to be able to read imported 3dm objects correctly grouped, per material or per layers.


Also it would be good to have a command to lock a layer, to make it visible but not selectable,
and an option to turn on\off snapping to locked layers.
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 From:  okapi
1944.12 
C4d would be interesting to look at in my opinion.
To me it has by far the best scene management concept.

It has a scene tree and a distinct layer manager. It may be worth looking into.

Also, a nice feature it has in the scene tree, is that it allows you to 'paint' layer information from one object to any other object near it in the scene tree.
Very quick way to change attributes (hard to describe).
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 From:  PaQ
1944.13 In reply to 1944.11 
Hi Okapi,

I don't really understand what you mean by 'cryptic', that's said I never said to replace MoI interface by an lightwave one ...

>> Also it would be good to have a command to lock a layer, to make it visible but not selectable,
and an option to turn on\off snapping to locked layers

Well that's the point I'm talking about, but I would love to be able to lock/unlock/hide layers without having to scroll into a tree that takes half part of my screen. That's why I showed the tiny lightwave layer system.
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 From:  DannyT (DANTAS)
1944.14 In reply to 1944.9 
Hi PaQ,

> Here's the horrible lw interface :P ... on the upper right corner you have the layer system ... it's really small, but it allows all what I'm talking about.

Just wondering in that layer system how do you know what part is under what little square ?

.
~Danny~
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 From:  Grendel
1944.15 
Here is a little more to throw on the fire. I see both sides of the lightwave layer scheme. It's very accessible but it's also not obvious what is in their just by looking at it.



I use C4D and tags can quickly add up and C4D has a ton of them. If you limit you're scope of tags maybe this would be good otherwise you can end up with ten tags for and object quickly.


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 From:  PaQ
1944.16 
Hi Danny,

As Grendel said, you don't really know what's behind a layer until you click on it.
In practice it's not a huge problem, as you remind the structure automatically in fact, as far as you don't play with more than 10 layers of course.

Now the more I think about it, the more this system looks probably a little bit 'old school'. As I'm so used to it, I probably don't have a good overview of the weakness ... the main one is that you limit yourself to a couple of layers.

The simon example is quite cool, the tree looks good and you have a good overview of the structure because every part are correctly named.
The problem, for unorganized people like me, is that most of the time I finish with a tree like the cinema 4D image, where only one or 2 objects are correctly renamed, and all the other layers are 'untitled'. So if I still have to pick layers one by one until I find the one I want to lock, hide, or show :(

EDITED: 7 Sep 2008 by PAQ

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 From:  okapi
1944.17 In reply to 1944.13 
I did not that that you implied it should be replaced.

By cryptic, I mean that you have no clue what those small buttons do intuitively.
Also, a classic shader tree has the advantage that you can nest objects in one another to create hierarchies.
True the LW layer system has the advantage of being very compact.
Modo's is nice in that it offers both systems, depending on how small you make the shader tree, it transforms automatically into a system that is close to the LW one, or something in between.


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 From:  DannyT (DANTAS)
1944.18 
Yeah, I like the system Grendel mentions it's close to most CAD packages assembly tree layout, but then I like PaQ's idea about the quick access on/off/hide system.

So that last graphic you have there Grendel is the best of both worlds, which is cool, but, the size of that tree is a bit big, I thought anyway.

So I stared at MoI for a while and had this in mind, so I thought I'd throw it out here for discussion.
It was quick so I might of missed something.

It functions like the OSnap except it has 3 clicks for the tick, which are ✓ for normal operation X for Non Selectable and blank for hide and the rest is self explanatory.



~Danny~

EDITED: 7 Sep 2008 by DANTAS

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 From:  okapi
1944.19 
Here a couple of screenshots of the C4d system.
What is nice are the amount of options, since you can switch between the normal,
hierarchical tree, to a tree organized by layer, or an alphabetical list, to name a few.

The search option is also really good, as it filters out automatically as you are typing.


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 From:  Grendel
1944.20 
Dantas I like the look of yours as well, but I think it looks good now because you have a small amount of objects where you may not need a tree anyway. If you have an scene with 80 different components it is then the same size as what I had. I do like that it looks simple and in keeping with tht UI overall but when it pops up it will be in the middle of the workspace I think instead of off to the side so it may obstruct viewing.
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