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Posted: Mon May 16, 2005 6:00 pm
by DYeater
joeri wrote:Can't someone write a python script to add default models/settings etc.
- 3point light. -Limbo -Nightfall set. things like that. One button -> done.
Oooh ... what a great idea ... somebody get right on that one ... k? Seriously ... :)

Well they key is..

Posted: Tue May 17, 2005 12:57 am
by bfvietnam
1. add another popup menu somewhere, the popup loads in
a default blend file.. Default the popup to whatever is the most popular.
And allow people to add or remove from them, but deliver blender with say about 5 or ten of these settings.. Kinda like skins, but with different settings, like a modeller's setting may change colors in the screen, set undo to a high level, set renders to a high level, make world dual color, adds a plane, a reference cube, add primitives to the "add" menus that are suitable for a modeller or put useful primitives in another layer or even another scene, etc, whatever makes the environment suitable for a modeller.

Then do this for the animator, the lighting artist, etc..

I don't know how to seperate the blend file from the existing scene (if it will write over it).. But in the worst case, it may only suffice as user defaults when one starts a new project.

Another thing that could be configured in the defaults is directory path defaults, sound configurations, whatever makes sense for the selection of defaults.. It will be tough to determine a default that everyone can accept. But it kinda defeats the concept of a default to have ten, there can only be one.. However you can make one the default or all of blender installs, and
make the other 9 options..

I personally don't see much point in making things without variation, people tend to want one thing, but if you allow for variations on a feature, then people won't take sides, everyone is satisfied.. I see this kind of cconcern a lot in computer work, and people don't realize they have a choice and that there is a lot of ways to provide features without limiting it to one thing.. Note, there are not many three team sports, only two team sports, its too hard for people to take sides on a three team sport I guess.

Posted: Tue May 17, 2005 1:07 am
by bfvietnam
kxs wrote:
HiNMity wrote: Its not about designing for the newbie. Its about accessability and user friendly interface. Everyone benefit from logical clean interface.
I think that Blender`s interface IS user friendly. The thing is that it is quite different from 3dMax or Maya interface. I think the main way of convincing people to try out Blender is making cool renders and animations. When you see that something great whas made with Blender you want to try that soft.
There is a concept in GUI design "putting memory in the user, versus putting memory in the design". Not talking about computer memory, but where the knowledge is.. If you had a 3DsMax user come to blender, and they are working with both programs, you want to make it easy for the 3DsMax user to shift without having to remember what hotkeys do what.. If you keep them different, there is a greater chance for error.. Also a good way to tell a design is if the interface is fundamentally understandable, take a look at SILO and how it implements the "rotation" gadget.. Doesn't the handles look like something you would see in a machine shop, doesn't it look like you can grab a handle and turn it, its a clue to what the gadget does, that's what designers of interfaces spend a lot of time thinking about (good GUI designers that is)... Maya and 3DsMax on the other hand have really sorry GUI's.. But there may be defaults configured specifically for 3DsMax users that use blender in the process.. Each audience may have its own set of defaults in blender.

The flip side, though, of having multiple settings to defaults is that it can make tutorials confusing. And technical support hard..

Posted: Tue May 17, 2005 12:19 pm
by joeri
HiNMity wrote: Its not about designing for the newbie. Its about accessability and user friendly interface. Everyone benefit from logical clean interface.
I'm no GUI expert, but I have an opinion about everything. :) Best read my comment in that light. (Or better; just ignore it, it's not constructive, just a tought).

So yes everyone will benefit from logical clean interface, but not everybody has the same logic.

for example:
Greying out buttons that do not have a function now is a help to newbies, but not to all. I might know what I'm going todo later and set the value for now. For example. You can grey out OSA settings when osa is not on. With the logic that it's not going todo anything anyway. But I might want to set it to OSA 8, so I wouln't need to think about it later. Then once I need the osa, I've set the correct values, and set it on in one click.

Back to the default scene;
Blender has some old habits, that where very usefull being an inhouse tool. These habits are found annoying by a growing audience bacause they are not used to these habbits. They are used to other habbits. Other 3d package habbits (turntable camera), or other 2d habbits (photoshop pretty much explains itself).
Then there are 2 options, remove the old habbits, or tell the user to learn new habbits. The later one is the more difficult one, but probably better, 'cause blender has proven to have a very fast workflow for people who master the program and it's a real shame to deminish that so only more people can use it on a lower level. If both can be reached than ofcourse that would be great, but I did not see the path to that goal yet.

Anyway. Eskil said that newbees don't want to be newbies and set the program to 'advanced' anyway. He is probably right.

Posted: Tue May 17, 2005 12:29 pm
by kxs
joeri`s right

Posted: Thu May 19, 2005 4:43 am
by HiNMity
Joeri: Im not a GUI expert either but we have the right to opinion ey ;)
and true everyone has different logic however;

On the topic "Release suggestions" which discuss what blender can provide as good defaults its also important to discuss Blender user interface since the topics relates to each other. Perhaps a newbee wants to use "newbee mode" all time since it might provide what is needed for his/her project. Its difficult to say since, as been said many times, everone feel different.

Though alot of ideas that can be found in other packages is very useful and are already established in many users workflow. A few of them are

- Left click/Marquee select
- Customizable key/mouse bindings
- Euler tumbling viewport ( whick keeps the viewport up-axis constant and not dolly when tumbling)
- Floating panels ( as in build you gui wherever/however you want)
- Customizable menus
- Tabbed panes

And more.

If Blender had those things as defaults it would gain a larger audience but it would not leave out the existing one since blender would be designed to be ultra customizable but with good recognisable fast approach features.

Sometimes i get the impression that blender tries to reinvent the wheel and forces the users to like it. I know this is a open source project but perhaps the question to keep in mind when making blender even better is:

How can we make this tool to fit into as much peoples production pipelines as possible and how can we build it around a fast learning approach?

Posted: Thu May 19, 2005 8:58 am
by LetterRip
Left click/Marquee select
- Customizable key/mouse bindings
- Euler tumbling viewport ( whick keeps the viewport up-axis constant and not dolly when tumbling)
- Floating panels ( as in build you gui wherever/however you want)
- Customizable menus
- Tabbed panes
asside from euler tumbling, and left click (which can already be customized)

all of the others await the event code refactor (except for tabbed panes, which isn't on the radar),
Sometimes i get the impression that blender tries to reinvent the wheel and forces the users to like it.
Blender originated before many of these conventions existed. Changing takes a significant refactor of pretty much every tool blender has, so is not a small task.
How can we make this tool to fit into as much peoples production pipelines as possible and how can we build it around a fast learning approach?
Some of the coders do think this way. Each participant is on his own path though and so those who are best capable of doing particular work are not always those interested in doing that particular work.

By siggraph I hope and expect we can have Blender setup to be completely customizable in menus, button layouts, and keybindings, panels, etc. (No promises though, but I certainly will assist as much as I can in moving Blender that direction).

LetterRip

Posted: Thu May 19, 2005 2:23 pm
by joeri
HiNMity wrote:- Left click/Marquee select
- Customizable key/mouse bindings
- Floating panels ( as in build you gui wherever/however you want)
- Customizable menus
- Tabbed panes
I don't see how any of these are that important.
No tool I use have these functions and they all work very well, from hamer, car to coffemaker.

Photoshop has no key binding, and I never heard anybody complain about that.
I believe that floating panels are made by the devil. More and more packages move away from floating panels (dreamweaver, flash, word).
All photoshop users I know complain about windows being in the view and want a second monitor to put the panels (next to each other) on. Windows user complain about windows being opend on top of parent windows. Etc.

If you want I can show some pictures of the tools they use at pixar.
HiNMity wrote:If Blender had those things as defaults it would gain a larger audience but it would not leave out the existing one since blender would be designed to be ultra customizable but with good recognisable fast approach features.
Workflow is hardly customizable.
For example; B- Click or ClickDrag for box select is baked in the software, no keybinding is going to alter that. ( On the other hand blender is highly custumizable, just dl the code, compile your own version. No kidding, I understand not everybody is a programmer, but for larger Multimedia companies this should really be easy. )
First select then action, or select an action then on what object, is baked in software, so again not custumizable, and that's more important then anything else.

For what you are saying the user has to be not only is an expert at blender (know where and what all functions do) but also an expert at GUI.
HiNMity wrote:Sometimes i get the impression that blender tries to reinvent the wheel and forces the users to like it.
Pretty much like other software. Ever tried flash?
But I think it's not true. There is a certain workflow in mind, and yes the users need to follow that workflow (for example select object, action on selected), if they don't like it; get another package. But it's not a random workflow invented by some car mechanic. It's based on inhouse animators creating daily animations. Pro's. Surely it's not bad to adapt to there habbits? What I read here are adaptations to grow a larger audience of hobbiests. I put large question marks to that goal. Or rather not to the wish of that goal, but to the possibility to reach that goal with the current code base.
HiNMity wrote:How can we make this tool to fit into as much peoples production pipelines as possible and how can we build it around a fast learning approach?
I'm still not convinced this is a good question.
I don't see time and assets to get all workflows in one package, blender does not even have 1 workflow for lots of parts of creating animations. Alias/Discreet have a big crew on their software where the can make everything a tool or action or etc. That comes with a price: big $$$ for the package. Other write on only a small part of the animation process, like modo and wings (modeler) or mental ray and yafray (renderer). They all more or less excel in their part.
Blender is a complete suite. That's not a marketing credo, that's what it is.
A single person can produce a logoflap in one day. A single person can produce one animation scene (like explaining how a coffee machine works) in one week. That's what blender is good at.
I rather see time and effort in this 'forced' workflow expand in character animation and flow animation and dynamics then in getting more users making more checkerboards. And say oow and aww on a mirrored raytraced subsurfed sub-surface scattered cubes.

Flying an airplane means learning the cockpit. And when one of the engines is on fire I want a button to start the fire extinguisher, not a greyed out button under fire toggle in the hazard tab.

I'm not against making things easier. But the GUI guys will have a tough job on making it easier for everybody. Maya style floating panels with user definable plug-in calling MEL scripts is just a toy if it can't call things as morph targets, driven keys and smooth skin binded IK joint chains.

I understand that's largly just me. I can adapt to another layer of eye candy.

Posted: Thu May 19, 2005 7:34 pm
by ysvry
background color to black or white is bad ideer too much contrast hurts the eye. the inclusion of some starters scenes is a better ideer. also write in one of these that you can save evry file as standard opening file with ctrl u. The turntable works better then max version this so called genius coder just has to get used to it or write his own turntable python script.
we dont want to change blender into max just out of conservatism.

Posted: Sun May 22, 2005 12:09 am
by kxs
If there`s now a new window: Timeline, maybe someone could change the default SCR:1 - Animation. Add header to Audio window at the bottom and change it to Timeline.

Posted: Sun May 22, 2005 11:09 am
by kxs
why can`t you add that orange theme as an alternative theme to select?