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 From:  Jesse
3034.1 
Hi Michael,

I'm not sure if this has been mentioned before and I'm sure you've got your hands full as it is,
but have you taken a look at this plug-in for Rhino? It sure has a lot of neat functionality packed into it!

Would it be possible to do something like this for MOI?

http://jarek-rhinoscripts.blogspot.com/search/label/Plugin

Regards,

Jesse
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 From:  Frenchy Pilou (PILOU)
3034.2 In reply to 3034.1 
Seems Array Curve, Scale Array make some of these features ;)
---
Pilou
Is beautiful that please without concept!
My Gallery
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 From:  Michael Gibson
3034.3 In reply to 3034.1 
Hi Jesse, well that is a pretty darn complex array system...

Most of the time for core functions in MoI I have a big focus on keeping them easy to use and not making then so extra complicated.

In the future I will probably be able to add in some similar functionality through plug-ins and like Pilou mentions there is actually a start on that already with the ScaleArray plugin which you can add in to MoI which lets you apply a scale factor to each successive element in an array.

To set up ScaleArray in MoI see here:

http://kyticka.webzdarma.cz/3d/moi/#ScaleArray
http://moi3d.com/forum/index.php?webtag=MOI&msg=275.109


Also in MoI v2 the regular ArrayCurve command has an additional "Align to Surface" button that looks like it covers another aspect of that other system.

For more information on that see here:
http://moi3d.com/forum/index.php?webtag=MOI&msg=2711.23


Is there any one particular aspect of that plugin that you are trying to do in MoI?

- Michael
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 From:  Jesse
3034.4 In reply to 3034.3 
Hi Michael,

I agree that integrating a complex array system would defeat the whole thrust of MoI's
simple but effective toolset, so I don't think all those functions should be bundled into
MoI, but there are a few useful things there that would be nice to have.

Having said that, the addition to MoI of "arraying on a surface" is really a valuable tool
for jewelry design. Keeping gemstones aligned "normal" to a surface during an array is really a big help.

I've installed scale array in MoI just to try it out, but I've yet to find a situation where
I would use it in my work. Maybe I just need to use my imagination better! :-)

Perhaps if there was a way to control the distance between objects irrespective of
their size, so that during a scale array, you could maintain a certain spacing between
objects while they graduate in size as they are arrayed on a surface.

I guess off the top of my head, I can't think of anything to add to the array tools
that won't complicate it! :-)

Jesse
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 From:  Michael Gibson
3034.5 In reply to 3034.4 
Hi Jesse,

> but there are a few useful things there that would be nice to have.

If you could pick out which ones are the most useful, that could help to focus some ideas for the future!

Anything else other than a "graduated array" ?


> Perhaps if there was a way to control the distance between
> objects irrespective of their size, so that during a scale array,
> you could maintain a certain spacing between
> objects while they graduate in size as they are arrayed on
> a surface.

I've definitely heard about this one from a few jewelers... The thing is, that the regular array functions actually do not need to know about the object's size specifically, they just make copies from a base point to a target point.

The kind that you are talking about here would be the one that would need to be aware of the sizes of objects since it would be adapting the array with something specific to the object's size.

One problem with this is that I'm not 100% sure of how this kind of array is defined - when you say "maintain a certain spacing", how exactly is that spacing measured? Is it distance along the surface or path curve? Or something like the "closest point" distance between each object?

The objects are rotating around with different orientations, right? So how would the distance be measured taking that orientation change into account?


I'd think that this would probably fit under some kind of special plugin in the future, but if I can get some more information on exactly how it is supposed to work, that would definitely increase the chances of me being able to add it in! :)

- Michael
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 From:  BurrMan
3034.6 In reply to 3034.5 
How about BoundingBoxCenter? That way, placing the first object would have it replicate exacly as the original, regardless of size. Then all the existing array functions like distance and extents can plug together with that?

I guess I wouldnt know how the "along surface" works and if it can still function AND use the boundingboxcenter for the scale AND still maintain how the aligment and position with the surface is calculated. :O
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 From:  Michael Gibson
3034.7 In reply to 3034.6 
Hi Burr,

> How about BoundingBoxCenter?

From what I understand, the distances between the bounding box centers are actually supposed to be variable for that style of array.

What I think is wanted is this distance to be equal:



So notice there that keeping that distance equal with different sized objects, will result in a variable amount of spacing between bounding box centers.

The desired result of this method is pretty clear when using exact circles in a straight line like I show there, the part that I am not certain about is what about for other objects than circles, and what about for other paths than a straight line, like along a curve? How is the distance supposed to be measured exactly in those cases?

Does it work with gemstones by treating the stone as having a circular outline around it?

- Michael
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 From:  Michael Gibson
3034.8 In reply to 3034.6 
Hi Burr,

> I guess I wouldnt know how the "along surface" works

Along surface can work with any kind of spacing - what it does is incorporate an additional rotation in it to rotate from the base surface normal to the target surface normal, so if you had something that started out perpendicular to the surface, each array instance will also be perpendicular to the surface instead of possibly rotating off to some other orientation which is possible when it is only following a curve path without any surface data.

- Michael
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 From:  BurrMan
3034.9 In reply to 3034.7 
BoundingBoxVariable>>

OIC. Actually Opposite of what I mentioned :O

Almost like you would have to create another "Widget". An object that presents on the boundingboxcenter that popsout and has 6 dragable arms (that would use snapping of course) that would be used to define the objects array parameters.







Seems like alot of work, but maybe some has been done already with the rotation widget.

EDITED: 19 Jun 2012 by BURRMAN

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 From:  Michael Gibson
3034.10 In reply to 3034.9 
Hi Burr, yeah but I would lean more towards having a specialized command to do that kind of a thing rather than have some kind of mondo complex multi-modal control widget tacked on to the regular array command.

One part that I don't understand is if it is meant to only work with something that has a kind of circular outline aspect to the shape.

- Michael
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 From:  BurrMan
3034.11 In reply to 3034.10 
Yeah I got a little carried away. 6 months worth of work for a specialized op. :O
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 From:  Jesse
3034.12 In reply to 3034.5 
Hi Michael,

I'll have to go back and check out the plug-in again to see which functions would be the most practical/useful
options to suggest for MoI.

As far as defining how the graduated array would be determined, I think the operation would apply mostly to round gemstones.
(but if I'm missing something here, to my MoI jewelry design friends... please feel free to correct me on this :-)

As long as the stones wind up an equal distance from each other while following the path curve on the surface,
whatever method that does it the best would work.

Do you think it would be closest point?


Thanks,

Jesse

EDITED: 29 Oct 2009 by JESSE

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 From:  Michael Gibson
3034.13 In reply to 3034.12 
Hi Jesse,

> As long as the stones wind up an equal distance from each
> other while following the path curve on the surface,
> whatever method that does it the best would work.

Well, there are different ways of measuring the distance which will give different answers.

Here's an example that's been exaggerated a bit so you can see what I mean.

Say for example these 2 gemstones have been distributed along the path curve:



If you measure distance as "distance along the path curve", it would measure the length of this curve piece indicated in red to get the distance value:



If you measure distance as "closest point between the 2 individual objects", it would measure the following red line to get the distance value:




> Do you think it would be closest point?

I don't know - I was hoping you would tell me! It is hard for me to make a tool to do something if the desired result is not well specified.


My best guess currently is that you may want to have a kind of "virtual circle" associated with each array instance and then it would be the closest point distance between these circles that would be targeted as the thing to equalize...

If you have any model files from other things that have created the desired result, if you could post those or send them to me at moi@moi3d.com it would probably help.

- Michael

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 From:  BurrMan
3034.14 In reply to 3034.13 
Do lines have Normals? because closest point in surface normal positve direction would be the 2 desired upper tips of the triangle.
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 From:  Michael Gibson
3034.15 In reply to 3034.14 
Hi Burr,

> Do lines have Normals?

Well, curves have tangents which can be used to get perpendiculars which can be used similar to how surface normals work on surfaces.

- Michael
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 From:  BurrMan
3034.16 In reply to 3034.15 
Yeah so closest point in relation to line tangent perp or surface normal... Where's Petr when you need him :O (sketching some cool animation! Thanks for the k-sketch link. Cool app.)
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 From:  Michael Gibson
3034.17 In reply to 3034.16 
Hi Burr,

> Yeah so closest point in relation to line tangent
> perp or surface normal...

Yup, maybe... Do you have some jewelry models that show this kind of array in them?

It would be great to see some actual results of how the end result is supposed to look.

- Michael
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 From:  BurrMan
3034.18 In reply to 3034.17 
No Sorry Michael, I was just chiming in. I was just watching a video demo the other day of a Rhino Plug that did a nice job, but couldnt re-find what I was looking at.
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 From:  Colin
3034.19 In reply to 3034.18 
Hi Michael,

I'm not positive, but I've a feeling that what Jesse's referring to might be a feature within Matrix?
Matrix is a Hi End Jewellery Plug-in that uses Rhino as it's engine.
http://www.gemvision.com/html/products/matrix/matrix.html

I don't have Matrix, but a friend of mine does, so I've seen first hand some of the fancy things it can do.

There's another Jewellery Plug-in for Rhino called RhinoGold & that might also have a similar kind of feature?
http://www.rhinogold.com/en/

Again I don't have RhinoGold, but I've seen some of the features within their Tutorials.
http://www.rhinogold.com/en/videotutorials.htm

Hopefully some of those links might help to explain what Jesse is after?

regards Colin
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 From:  Jesse
3034.20 In reply to 3034.13 
Hi Michael,

I see what you mean... it's not out of the question that we'd run into a situation like your example.

I think your 1st version using "distance along the path curve" would accomplish the desired result.
But... could the object's "normal" relationship to the surface still be maintained?

Could the objects be uniform in size as well as graduated in size? A lot of times, the stones will be the same size.

Right now, we work with the diameter of the stones and the length of the curve to determine
the spacing of uniform objects. If the array doesn't work out with the desired spacing, then we have to either
change the length of the curve or the stone size, each dependent on constraints dictated by
the shape and size of the model as well as where we want the stones to go on the model.

Would it be possible to scale a uniform in size bunch of objects to fit a certain spacing along a curve
while placing them normal to the surface? Probably too complicated?

Colin's assumption is correct. I know Matrix does the kinds of things that ArraycrvPLUS does, but I'm not sure about RhinoGold.

I'll dig up a model as an example to send to you. I hope you don't think I'm asking for too much... :-)
I just want to explore some options because I don't know what's technically outside of the realm of realistic possibilities.

Thanks,

Jesse

EDITED: 29 Oct 2009 by JESSE

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