Blender as research tool: from data to visualization

dr. Sybren A. Stüvel

Sunday 27 October Salon 60

For my research I created my own bit of Blender UI, interfacing with a database containing research data. Blender helped me a lot by visualizing and transforming this data. In this workshop I will talk about (and show) what these useful techniques have helped me to achieve. We'll focus on:

  1. Creating objects in Blender through Python API calls.
    This will simply start by selecting the Scripting layout, utilizing the auto-completion of the interactive console to explore the available operators, data, etc.
  2. Restructuring those calls into an operator.
    After showing the console, we'll move to the text editor and create an operator. This will make it easier to apply the same code in different situations.
  3. Extending the Blender UI to call your operators.
    A text file is nice, a proper Blender extension is better. Especially when it extends the Blender UI and things get easy to use.
  4. Loading data from a SQLite database to populate your UI.
    This gives us the ability to load & visualize data from outside Blender, turning Blender into a data visualization and exploration tool.

The workshop will be aimed at people with at least a basic understanding of object-oriented programming, preferably with Python.