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An update to Anim8or, v1.00b, is available with a few bug fixes. Get your copy HERE. See the "ReadMe" file for details.

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Messages - Water Music

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General Anim8or Forum / Re: Measuring objects
« on: March 01, 2014, 01:13:55 am »
Being able to change units would be awesome. Even just being able to set precise scaling would help with large backdrops (model small, re-size large).

Of course, volume displays would also be useful (if I'm using Anim8or to plan a custom sword hilt or something it would be nice to get a prediction of weight), but the math for that gets pretty scary so I personally wouldn't bother.

General Anim8or Forum / Re: Measuring objects
« on: February 28, 2014, 01:27:17 am »
Also, while I don't think he's mentioned it, with one of the current releases Steve has included edge length in the edge properties properties box. Thank you for that Steve, by the by. Very useful.

Ongoing Anim8or Development / Re: Layers
« on: February 09, 2014, 09:13:27 pm »
Figure editor: I wanted to think about this before I replied before. First, I think that, yes, adding layers to it would be an improvement as rigging a skeleton can be tricky when there is lots of clutter. I would actually prefer, though, if the skeleton were its own layer in the object mode. That would probably muck up backwards compatibility, though it wouldn't be too tough to write a script to change the old format to the new format - run once per model and forget. Mostly I have to say that the figure editor is my least favourite section of Anim8or and I'd rather time be spent redesigning it, rather than adding to it. I'd rather see greater support for reusing and re-proportioning skeletons from one model to the next, more finite control over the weighting (influence sliders or alterable fields showing the precise degree of influence on each vertex), and a smoother control over the bones when positioning them. My thoughts, for what they're worth.

My other thought with the layers, specifically in object mode would that it would be useful to have a visibility priority level that one could set for each layer. For example, if I have a generic person model, wearing a shirt, with a necklace or backpack or sword harness overtop of that we would normally expect to see accessories over shirt over the figure. If you tried to build the three with separate objects then clipping and z-fighting is inevitable. Priority level would tell Anim8or to draw the back faces first, then overwrite with the figure, then the shirt, then other accessories or hair or whatever. For your consideration.

Ongoing Anim8or Development / Re: Layers
« on: February 04, 2014, 05:29:29 am »
Interesting. I like it.

Two things I'd find useful: a transparency slider for each layer, instead of just a visibility toggle, can help with relative positioning; and being able to add select vertices - to a layer to change visibility and lock for editing - would be insanely useful on complicated meshes.

Gotta love scope creep.

Anim8or v0.98 Discussion Forum / Re: Feature Request Thread
« on: December 19, 2013, 03:11:21 am »
non-essential Tier 2 request (unless Anim8or can already do it and I just haven't found it):

I'd like to be able to link in objects, figures, and sequences from separate Anim8or projects in scene mode.

For example, say I have a trees.an8 file with a bunch of different types of trees in them and then create a new project. It would be a lot cleaner and easier to create a reference to trees::oakObject.windSequence1 than to clutter each mode in the new project with duplicate data.

Not mission critical, as one can import objects already. However, it would be nice to have a file of common props, a file of skyboxes, a file of extras idling, and just click add when necessary.

Anim8or v0.98 Discussion Forum / Minor Bug Report - Duplicate faces
« on: December 19, 2013, 02:46:34 am »
Sorry I haven't had much time to play around with the new version until now. So far it's looking good but I have come across one odd change:

1. take a mesh
2. copy and paste that mesh over itself
3. Join solids
4. merge overlapping points
result: the vertices merge, but there are two instances of each face. In previous versions they used to collapse down to one face.

Not a big deal, but I thought I'd bring it up just in case. I only see it because I tend to copy meshes, cut away large portions to do detail work on specific areas, and then reattach.

And thanks for updating the program, by the by. I do appreciate the work you've put into it.

Anim8or v0.98 Discussion Forum / Re: Feature Request Thread
« on: August 28, 2013, 05:21:34 am »
Raxx: honestly there's a bunch of other stuff I'd like to see added first.  So yeah, let's just consider that a side comment about the existing request to make morphs accessible in the sequence editor.

Anim8or v0.98 Discussion Forum / Re: Feature Request Thread
« on: July 29, 2013, 10:42:01 pm »
With regards "Morph targets in sequence editor": one slick way of pulling this off is by having a morph triggered by a bone motion.  For example, a morph can be set whereby if a person's forearm is raised the bicep slides up the upper arm, proportionally.

My personal preference would actually be to combine the object editor, figure editor, and sequence editor together.  It'd be easy enough to add buttons that toggle these aspects in the object editor.  Advantage: if modifiable vertices were created to designate the end points of the bones then it would be a snap to rescale parts of one character to create another character, without having to re-bone and re-skin all of it from scratch. It'd also be easier to see how well joints hold up to movement and do any corresponding fine tuning - as you wouldn't have to keep changing screens and you could edit vertices mid-motion to get what you want. Mind you, that would entail quite an overhaul, but I think it would be worth it.

Thoughts, anyone?

Anim8or v0.98 Discussion Forum / Re: Feature Request Thread
« on: July 01, 2013, 09:50:12 pm »
One more tiny thing that would be hugely useful to me.  I'd like it if the Edge Property Editor (d-click an edge) displayed the length of the edge.  Useful to me because I tend to use Anim8or to draft 3d models of things I plan on making in real life, and sometimes I need to know that sort of thing to get the right materials, etc.

And +1 to adding and removing objects from bones in Scene Editor.

I always used to select the vertices I wanted to "mirror" and move them around with the non-uniform scale tool.  Of course this still meant duplicating all tasks involving cutting new vertices, filling in faces, etc.  But, I found it was pretty fast.  Obsolete now, all hail our fearless leader.

General Anim8or Forum / Re: 3D printer
« on: May 30, 2013, 07:17:44 pm »
This is the one that caught my eye:

Anim8or v0.98 Discussion Forum / Re: Feature Request Thread
« on: May 27, 2013, 07:34:08 pm »
RAXX: By "non-linear speed options" I was referring to the fact that a bone in a sequence always moves at a steady rate between keyframes: (total angle/#frames) per frame.  It would be nice to specify that the motion should start slow and end fast (like when throwing a punch), start fast and end slow (like reacting to the above mentioned punch), or start and end slow but moving faster in the middle (like moving to pick up something delicate).  The only way to do these now is to add a whole bunch of keyframes, and try to tweak them all manually so that they flow naturally. ***edit since this is in development already, let's just ignore this one.

Warning:  long geek rant
As for "passively-controlled bones," I basically mean ragdoll physics.  Moving an arm is something we do actively, but long hair moves in predefined ways according to outside influences.  I'll try to quickly lay those out here, first to illustrate what I'm talking about, second to make it easier for Steve to implement, and lastly if there are any amateur game makers out there it is pretty simple to implement these for decent looking results.

Note:  3d physics are not real physics, so this is meant as an approximation specifically for 3d animation.  Some corners are cut, for ease of implementation.  As animation operates in step functions, better results are obtained the more "frames" there are.

Right, so a bone in modelling is essentially a vector and I can summarize what I am going to say by saying that we will derive the bones new orientation for each frame by adding all of the vector influences on that bone that we can think of.  Definition of terms: S1 is the new xyz position of the bones root for the new frame; E1 is the end position for the same bone, same frame which we are trying to solve; S0 & E0 are the start and end for the previous frame; S-1 & E-1 are for the frame before that.

Inertial vector: we start with the vector S1 to E0, which represents the mass "resisting" new motion
Momentum vector: we add the vector E-1 to E0 to continue any existing motion
Gravity vector: we add a user-defined vector straight up or down the y-axis (depending on whether it is to rise or sink and to what rate).  This will need to be uniquely defined for each bone.
Wind vector: Another user-defined variable indicates how strongly wind affects the bone.  The wind vector is that variable multiplied by the wind vector at the bone's location (more on that in a minute)
Spring vector: This is the tricky one and can be done in a couple of ways.  The easiest, but least correct, way is to add a vector from the bones current end position to what would be the bone's default rest position, multiplied by another user-defined variable representing the strength of the spring.  A more accurate approach looks at the angle difference between the bones current position and its default rest position, and accelerates the bone towards that rest position consistent with the formula (Moment of Inertia)*(angular acceleration)=-((spring coefficient)*(change in angle)-(drag)).  I'll pull resistance out for now to simplify it to: (user-defined variable)*(-change in angle).  This gives a theoretical angle correction, and our spring vector becomes the vector between E1 before the spring correction to E1 after the spring correction.
Resistance vector:  This will take another user-defined variable μ for the resistance.  The resistance vector equals E1 - μ(E1 - E0)
Bounceback vector: If E1 is outside its limits on its x, y, or z axis, or with collision detection if it intersects another object, you could have the bone bounce back along that axis by a fraction of the amount that it would otherwise be over.

Add them all up, correct the bone length back to normal and watch it sort itself out.

This brings us to the many ways to set up wind/tide.  The easiest is simply to set a wind vector for the entire scene.  The next level of complexity allows the user to alter the strength and direction of that vector using keyframes.  The next level allows the user to create wind splines through a scene, along which pulses of wind travel affecting bones proportionally based on proximity.  The last level would create tweakable splines around objects automatically.  However it is used, each time a wind vector is called up it should be randomized slightly for effect.  And if you are really a glutton for punishment, you could affect an object's wind drag according to how much of its profile is showing, how perpendicular the wind vector is to the polygon normals, etc.

Anyway, thus ends the long rant.  I place no demands on this being implemented, I just hope its helpful.  And if the mods feel it is too long/out of place then feel free to delete this post.  Thanks.

Anim8or v0.98 Discussion Forum / Re: Feature Request Thread
« on: May 26, 2013, 09:16:32 pm »
These have been mentioned before, but I think the biggest things Anim8or has been missing are the importing and exporting of rigged models and animations.  That's essential for anyone who wants to use Anim8or models in real-time applications - games and such.

And, of course, any preset application of physics can give better looking results in a lot less time.  Passively controlled bones were mentioned in an earlier post, non-linear speed options between keyframes, collision detection, IK, etc.  Steve's heard all that before, of course.

Mostly though, I'm just looking forward to seeing what Steve feels like implementing.

General Anim8or Forum / Re: 3D printer
« on: May 25, 2013, 03:00:43 am »
Interesting, thank you.  As much as I would like to hit "print" on a Milanese chased helmet, somehow I don't think I ever want to find out how much one of these would cost.  Still, the thought should be enough to make my machinist friends jealous.

And yeah, if you want to make a gun all you need is a block of wood with a hole through it, a bullet, hammer, nail, and a very stupid friend willing to wait until you are a few miles away getting an alibi.  Not to be recommended, but not that hard.

General Anim8or Forum / Re: 3D printer
« on: May 23, 2013, 05:05:29 pm »
So ENSONIQ5, I've been curious.  When I've heard of 3d printed titanium parts, I have assumed that they printed a plastic model that they used to make a mould.  Can titanium be printed directly?  Electricty and wire feed, rather than piping in liquid metal, I suppose?

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