Coupla small requests?...

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 From:  WillBellJr
679.1 
Finally got to sit down and enjoy some MOI modeling...

I've always been a SciFi nutt since being a Kid, wasn't nothing like Satruday nite monster movies!

I also loved to read Analog Science Fiction books et al; the covers and story illustrations showing flying saucers, laser pistols and finned rocket ships was the stuff that made my imagination fly and who I am today (an aspiring game programmer and Wing Commander / Spaceflight Sim junkie!)

Today I finally got to begin tackling a cover illustration I've been wanting to do for a while just to hone my modeling skills - of course MOI was the tool of choice!





While getting to this point in my modeling, a couple of wishes popped into mind:

1) Is it possible to have filename incrementing when saving a file? I usually create my objects in steps, incrementing as I reach milestones etc.

2) Is there a way to add a setting for the sensitivity of the mouse pan/zoom/rotate at the bottom of the screen? A numeric entry field in the Rotate/Pan/Zoom dialog would be perfect. A lot of times it's hard to control the speed - the model flies all around and off the screen a good amount of times...

3) In a similar vein, is it possible to have the view orbit around a selected object? Sometimes when working close and all zoomed in, you want to rotate around the object at hand - in Lightwave, selecting an object and clicking [shift]-A changes the view center to the bounding box center of the selcted object - I would love this in MOI, being able to rotate around a selected object!

There was one more but I forget what it was now...

If I had to choose, #3, is the most important to me and would be really helpful.

-Will
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 From:  Michael Gibson
679.2 In reply to 679.1 
Hi Will, that's looking good!

#1, filename incrementing - this is possible if you set up a keyboard shortcut. Go to Options / Shortcut keys, and add a new entry. Put in "Alt+S" (or whatever you like) for the Key part, and "IncrementalSave" (without quotes) for the Command part. With that in place, you can then push Alt+S to do an incremental save, your file will be saved as filename01.3dm, then filename02.3dm, etc...

#2 - I'll add some way to control this for the next beta.

#3 - I probably won't be able to add that exactly for V1, but there are a couple different things you can do to help. First, if you select the object you want to focus on (it can be a sub-object like an edge or a face), then push "Reset" on the view controls panel, it will zoom to show that object and also set the rotation pivot point to the center of that object. So any rotations after that will pivot around that selected object. (Right click on reset to do it in all viewports).

If you want to focus in on a particular point, say the corner of a cube, then you can use the Area zoom button in that same view controls panel. Click that and the snap the zoom center point on to where you want to pivot around, and drag a zoom box. When you finish, your view will be centered on that point, and it will also be set as your new rotation pivot as well.

It's going to be a little difficult for me to make any changes to allow pivoting around some point other than the center of the screen, I don't think I will be able to do that for V1.

- Michael
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 From:  Michael Gibson
679.3 In reply to 679.2 
re: #2 - I also wanted to make sure you knew that there is also a different way to do rotations and pans by dragging inside the viewport with a right click for rotation, or middle click drag for pan. These are less sensitive, they don't have the same kind of continuous movement as the buttons in the view panel have (except pan does when you move near the edge of the viewport).

- Michael
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 From:  WillBellJr
679.4 In reply to 679.3 
Hi Michael, thanks for the support on this - I thought I saw the discussion here on Incremental saving when I first heard about MOI and just started to peek in on all the fun ;-) I kinda figured this would be an easy one for you - apparently it's already done - see! Great!

Yes, you know what it was - I always use the alt-key navigation method, but today, focusing on this model, the mouse wheel was zooming in/out in increments that were too large for what I was doing - the view zoom control allowed smooth continuous in/out zoom, it was just that it could fly around on you if you weren't careful how you moved the mouse over the controls (hence my request for some kind of sensitivity for them...)

Being able to control the sensitivity will make those controls operate in a way you don't have to think about them when they're being used - GUI transparency if you will...


I think what you've suggested may be good enough for me as far as the pivoting around focused objects - I'll give it a try - thanks!

I was hoping that a quick calculation of the focused object's bounding box center and then setting a view pivot around that would be easy to implement - of course I have no idea about how MOI manages its viewspace so I can appreciate that it may not be something simple to throw in.


I have to compliment you on such a great program!

I've been modeling here, the time passing away and I haven't had any bad experiences - I've been filleting edges to round them out, booleans to combine pieces, curve projections, trims, transformations, the background image - all this has been working predictably and without errors - MOI has been a joy to work with tonite, BRAVO!

-Will
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 From:  Michael Gibson
679.5 In reply to 679.4 
Thanks Will, I'm glad that it is working well for you!

It has been nearly a year now that MoI has been in public beta release. There's nothing quite like a wide public beta to get feedback on bugs and problems, so that's helped a lot to discover problems and get things tuned up.

- Michael
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 From:  WillBellJr
679.6 In reply to 679.5 
Well I'm just very happy for you cause you have a hit here and it looks like it's going to be a success - congrats!



Just a quick question concerning controling the resultant mesh topology of revolved surfaces

In the picture below, I've created the diamond shaped pivot and motor (barrel) for the radar dish using revolved profile curves.

I notice upon export most of those shapes instead of having ngons at the top have triangulated topology. In the interest of polygon reduction, obviously I'd prefer an ngon since it's a single flat polygon.

The same happened at the tip of the radar dish since that was a revolved profile as well. In that case however (as the insert shows) I decided to take a straight line and trim off the bit that had the triangles. It reduces the height or length of the object but at least you get a clean ngon during export (as shown in the inset.)

Is there a better way to do this?

I noticed for example when I created half the revolved shape for the radar base (the lower cylinder), when I mirrored the part for the opposite side, the mirrored part had a smooth planar circle (indicating that a ngon would be created there upon export) so I immediately deleted the original revolved piece and mirrored that cleaner part back.

I'm just wondering how I can force an ngon in those planar surfaces of revolved shapes?

Is there a function or is there some kind of best practice of creating these kinda shapes to avoid the triangles?

I'm thinking now perhaps if I delete the surface part with the triangles and then select the remaining edge curve and hit planar surface maybe that will work - I'll give that a try next!

Any suggestions or thoughts appreciated!

-Will

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 From:  Michael Gibson
679.7 In reply to 679.6 
Hi Will, your idea on deleting the top face and using Planar should do the trick. Once the underlying surface there is a simple plane, you will get a single n-gon there. One note - in this case you should be able to just select the entire object and then do Planar - when a full object is selected you can still run Planar on it and it will look for unattached edges and put trimmed planes on them.

There is actually some stuff built into revolve that tries to detect these types of revolved end planes and replaces them with simple planes. I just tried it on a few simple revolves and it seemed to be working, the only thing is that your line has to come really quite exactly perpendicular off of the revolve axis. If you can post one of the curves that you revolved that did not get a plane at the end, I could check it out.

- Michael
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