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Posted: Sat Jun 03, 2006 9:55 pm
by Alvaro
Blender doesn't need to imitate other's proceedings,
but on the other hand Blender sometimes miss some good and well tested standards other app have, as the relative zoom case, or the intensive use of contextual menus...

Posted: Sat Jun 03, 2006 11:10 pm
by artisanicview
LetterRip wrote:Mohij,

you can't :)

LetterRip
And this API refractor will be implemented in the next release (2.42) or later?

Posted: Mon Jun 05, 2006 8:30 pm
by Toon_Scheur
I realy can relate to Joeri's responses.
Following industry standards may be a good thing sometimes, but the industry standard should not overrule the obvious in favor for some super generic (thus non specific) way of designing your GUI. Restraining yourself to industry standards for a complex product like Blender will make it utterly unintuitive!

Joetainment discusses some very very subtle points. Like QWER or S , R, G? It is nothing more than two school of thoughts: Close proximity of the keys for midgets and gnomes or an easy way to remember the keys and functions.
It is not like Blender is like the old Word star that when you have to copy something you have to press Shift+ right Control+E+F4 or something.

I think Joetainment is a slave (no insulst intended :) ) to the industry standards. The industry standards should work for us, not the other way around.

I bet that IF Pixar would EVER release their super secret Puppet Master (Gepetto etc.) animation software, don't be suprised that it does not adhere to any industry standards at all. That is just the nature of an in-house software (like Blender was once).

BUT, there is danger looming on the horizon for Blender. I can see (or rather feel) that Blender is slowly drifting away from its own fast workflow paradigm. I hope that the next key-bindings project could bring some releave. For example, the Wkey in editmode is becoming quite cluttered. There are some new tools/ toys that are in dire need for a good reorganizing in the animation window and the physics/ particles windows.

I don't think that the devs way back then could have taken this problem into account. But for me it is a fact that Blender is overflowing. Things has to be reorganised without surrendering its fast workflow.

I think a nice idea for keybinding would be that one can produce and store a keybinding profile. Like for instance, when modeling, I start out rough, so I only need certain keys quick, but later on when tweaking I would change the key bindings to a tweak profile. My key bindings would be more of a uncluttering of the existing hotkeys.

So in short, what Joetainment is telling us that we should adapt the Maya paradigm? I'm totaly against that. I payed good money for the Blender manuals just to buy Maya manuals next?!

Posted: Sat Jun 10, 2006 8:49 am
by f22.raptor
Yeah, i can see things getting cluttered in blender. Even in 2.41, there are a lot of things "hiding" in sub menu's, and for somebody who uses the keyboard for 99% of the operations, its a bit of a slow down. I think some things like "remove doubles" or the "face editing" features can have their own menu, and the rest have their own. I personally dont like too many "sub menu's".

Even in the menus, like "mesh tools 1" & "mesh tools 2". My screen is too small to fit all the new menu's in (its a 17", which is small by todays standards, but still fairly average)

Having the menu's in the "heading" format, where you can switch between 2 different menus in 1 area is ok, but its still 1 extra step, especially if you use them both equally.

One thing that frustrated me a bit, as that the menus such as "mesh tools 1" will spring back if you exit then re enter edit mode. Having the Modifiers/shape menu in the spot that i like "mesh tools 1" slows me down. I might be silly and cant figure this out, but it would be much easier if the menu's would remember their position (in relation to each other) or if you could set a default spot for them. like mesh-tools-1, i would set to "spot 4" rather than modifiers/shape. It just adds that extra bit of "customizability" that helps everybody out, as they can get things they way they like. that is, if its not already like that, and im missing something :wink: (it seems to work with "mesh tools" but not with "mesh tools 1")

The modifier stack is growing on me, so i wont complain about that, but having all the menu's being able to be sorted could be a good idea IMO.

F22-RaptoR

Posted: Tue Jun 13, 2006 9:55 am
by joeri
I'm more for "repeat last" buttons.
Things like merge, merge at center, merge on first, merge etc... can easely be combined into merge and set-fav-merge. I think I made a mockup years ago. (mockup is from 24 12 04)
W- 5 > merge and W - shift 5 > remove double, merge first, merge center, etc. selection
W- 1 > subdivide and W - shift 1 > subdivide spans, subdivide random, etc. selection

And optical:

Image
Image

Posted: Tue Jun 13, 2006 3:54 pm
by etko
I think what blender really needs, is to MAKE THE DAMN THING USER FIRENDLY! And user interface design process should be more firiendly too! There should be some UI design body within blender foundation. It was mentioned in some posts but I never found it. Wiki concerning this is only one big mess where you don't know which features are being implemented and which are not. There should be one person or group of persons in charge of managing this UI body and consider every feature request, produce some simple and easy to read papers for both users and developers. Or there should at least some big and understandable pointer in this forums. Who is this person and where is it? I want to talk with him ;).

Because right now Blender is not user friendly AT ALL. Nor it is INTUITIVE.
So far for me most intuitive open source program for me is Mozilla Firefox. User friendly means friendly for users not for developers or whoever it is friendly for now (maybe aliens).

Blender somehow reminds my first programs and many other "scratch" programs of other programmers, used to test ideas and concepts, where keys are HARDCODED! Blender simply needs easy, simple, understandable and intuitive ability to remap keys. This should be priority. This ability will calm everyone. Maybe it needs standardised nomenclature too :). It needs one visible place where these settings can be chosen. Whole project needs better responsivenes from UI designers too.

For example I personally hate mouse gesture. These things are really annoying. I know I am not alone, it was proposed several times on this forum, that this setting should be customisable, however it was never implemented. There is no one to discuss this topic with, someone, who is in charge of this implementation.

Posted: Tue Jun 13, 2006 6:31 pm
by Toon_Scheur
Because right now Blender is not user friendly AT ALL. Nor it is INTUITIVE.
So far for me most intuitive open source program for me is Mozilla Firefox. User friendly means friendly for users not for developers or whoever it is friendly for now (maybe aliens).
I agree in general about the user friendliness of Blender. Its interface looks like a cockpit. But it has more to do with clutter. It is hard to compare the UI of blender with the UI of another app like Firefox. For starters, even with the 280 page manual, you're still not done. Making the UI as 'user friendly' as Mozilla would mean either:
a) Amputating lots of modules, i.e. Blender as a modeling app, or as a radiosity renderer or as a fluid simulator only.
b) Or redesigning the UI so that it matches the other mainstream app, thus making simple functions to perfom several mouse clicks and or hot keys away.

For me neither a) or b) are attractive. Granted there should be some redisgn, but we have to come up with something nothing short of genial to support Blender's rampant grow.

Just a stupid question, I've seen that you joined this forum about a year ago. Do you use Blender that long too? Have you ever used other 3d apps or is Blender the only one you are using?
3D media creation is as complex as it gets amongst software. You simply cannot reduce this to a Office 2003 style UI or a notepad UI or a Firefox UI.

Posted: Tue Jun 13, 2006 8:37 pm
by elander
Blender can be user friendly without copying other commonly used guis. It's a cultural thing that if you all guis use the same menu styles and the same window arrangements it's easier to get in the workflow and start using a program more quickly. Look at Mac apps that share many things in common. It's easy to pick up a Mac app if you already used another. This is user friendly by copying other apps. What i want to see is inteligent user-friendlyness and i think Blender is already very good at that. I find Blender easier to use and more productive than 3dstudio or Maya even if these apps are easier to pickup for starters. It's very easy for noobes to use it but the gui has lots of flows when you want to do complex things. Don't mix the concepts of a well designed gui with a gui that is similar to everyone else and that is easier to pickup for noobes.

Posted: Wed Jun 14, 2006 12:14 pm
by etko
I have access to 3DS MAX 7 at work so most times I use that after job hours when I want to try something. However MAX is VERY expensive for individual to purchase for home use here.

So I was searching some alternative. That was about a year ago. Frankly I was pleasantly surprised that something so mature like blender was free. I read some articles, and googled very positive reviews about the software. However first time I installed blender, it flew to recycle bin right after the first 10 minutes. This thing was completely strange, so far nothing I worked with was similar to this beast. But I like opensource, and I saw some amazing images before done with blender. I gave it some time and prepared my mind for learning. Then I found great article about how blender is designed etc. And idea of constant usage of shortcut keys was very interesting to me as I consider some well designed, keyboard only driven, character interfaces from dos times (like volkov commander) the best user interfaces ever created.

So I downloaded blender tut videos and watched it. Then I tried to change some settings to my liking and practiced some zooming around the box. This new feel of instant control was something amazing to me I was completely excited. So I tried to do some of my lame box modelling but the tools were so strange and everything alien. Plus some things which were vital for me (like smoothing groups, backface culling, rendering of hidden poly lines, add to this some wicked logic behind creating triangular poly etc.) were lacking. On top of that increddible anoyances started to pop up. Every time when you clicked vertex to move it, it was not selected and prepared to be moved but it jumped around by tiny amount. And when you missed some element, crazy mouse gesture jumped in. The last thing that killed me was crazy blender's question whether I am sure, when I tried to delete multiple vertexes, which completely kicked me out of the flow ;) (in my opinion undo function was designed to revert these things). Now that I call obtrusive. I became completely pissed again.

However that feeling to be able to quickly rotate and manipulate model troubled me. So next time I looked at MAXs help deeply. In about 20-30 minutes I was able to set up similar environment with shortcuts for view manipulation, plus I learned that there are some well thought mesh manipulation shortcuts designed. I tried it. It was very pleasant and fast. Plus no crazy mose gestures kicking into what I want to do :).

Later I saw my friends who are 3D game artists at work with max. Their setups are very different from how standard MAX looks. And they can work really fast, I saw one 2.5 k poly human head modelled after photograph in about one-two hours completed, with top notch texture mapping (no morph targets of course).

After all this I decided that blender has great potential, but I will wait till it will become more mature. From time to time I download it and try some things but almost always I am stucked behind something. From this I learned one thing, that MAX is quite versatile tool, and can be used really fast. Maybe Maya has same abilities. Yes, these tools look like point and click, but underneath the dumb user friendliness, they seem like really thoughtfully and deeply designed ;), at least in some aspects. I guess that things which are used most by customers, (usually artists) are optimized most and others are not that much. But I can clearly tell that somehow I am unable to guess how blender is optimised, for what workflow, and I can tell that I am not alone. Plus even when you say I'ts ounbtrusive this simply not true. I think that interface has amazing potential to make your actions "flow" but the are some unnecesarry hiccups which should be removed and maybe some fast "hint" system designed. Maybe something like ZBrush tooltips are, I really don't know. Entry to blender is really hard for many people, i think even ones willing to learn, anyway that's the reason why I still use MAX.

Posted: Wed Jun 14, 2006 8:25 pm
by elander
etko wrote:Every time when you clicked vertex to move it, it was not selected and prepared to be moved but it jumped around by tiny amount. And when you missed some element, crazy mouse gesture jumped in. The last thing that killed me was crazy blender's question whether I am sure, when I tried to delete multiple vertexes, which completely kicked me out of the flow ;) (in my opinion undo function was designed to revert these things). Now that I call obtrusive. I became completely pissed again.
Did you try to read the wiki manual to know how to select and move things?

I think gestures are still in, i don't think anyone uses this or ever did. They should get rid of it not to confuse people.

Posted: Thu Jun 15, 2006 5:32 am
by rejarndt
:?
I Like just the way they made it.
Yes it can be a chore to learn.
Look at some other apps

Lightwave - if you never did 3d in your life before this program can lose you

3ds max - this ones just as hard to learn

Maya - for get it I don't understand that one it's cool but ?????

all i'm trying to say is all roads lead to rome some are easy some are hard
some people have there way there.

if anything maybe we should add a hotkey ref popup window :idea:
for those who are still learning lord knows i have to look at the card and i've been using the program it from v2.27

:D

Posted: Thu Jun 15, 2006 5:36 pm
by elander
rejarndt wrote:if anything maybe we should add a hotkey ref popup window :idea:
for those who are still learning lord knows i have to look at the card and i've been using the program it from v2.27

:D
It is added already, don't remenber in what version: "Help->Hotkey and MouseAction Refrerence"

But you can consult the features added in each version here: http://www.blender.org/cms/Releaselogs.34.0.html

There are release logs since version 2.30. This is a very good way to know how Blender works.

Posted: Fri Jun 16, 2006 5:56 am
by Ammusionist
The thing I'm getting from this thread is this;

From experienced users:Blender's UI is fantastic for experienced users and new users become experienced users anyway!

From new users: Blender's interface is complicated and I want to be encouraged in my sojurn into the world of 3D by being able to do something easily.

Now I'm a "Can't we all just be friends" kind of guywith about 2½ years of Blender behind me so I'm not going to express my own personal preferences about preferences screens and mouse buttons. Instead, I have a dream...

Once the UI is customisable and everything (including hotkeys, mouse buttons, menus and icon layouts) can be set just the way we like them - I'd really like to see the community (for that's what we are) having the ability to save whole layout schemes. People could then choose to start off in blender in an environment that fits where they're coming from and then customise to suit themselves as they improve in confidence.

I'm thinking of this as an extension to the already well used library of Themes that can be downloaded for Blender. Imagine installing Blender and having the option to pick "If you're used to Maya" or "If you're used to 3D Max" or even "If you're new to 3D" with some of the more advanced features hidden, waiting to be turned on. Then a nice option in the preferences panel to change scheme later.

Anyhoo - just thinking out loud. What do you all think?

Posted: Fri Jun 16, 2006 2:00 pm
by BogdanOancea
...sort of like Corel did with their graphics suite, which contains optional UI configurations resembling Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop.

The only problem would be following the tutorials and docs without problems, and that puts the newcomers at disadvantage... again. :?

Anyway... while I'm at it, let me say that I agree with Joetainment on at least two issues:

(1) It's unnatural to have the default configuration set up so that we have to select objects with right-click. All the operating systems I know do the selection of items on the screen with left-click, so everybody (yes, everybody) feels it's natural to select things that way. Besides that, no 3D app I know does selection with right-click either. And please don't jump on me that I can set left-clicking in the Preferences -- I know that. We are talking about defaults here, and about easy adoption and migration...

(2) Do you guys really like repeatedly hitting the B key everytime you have to add more vertices to the selection? In my book, that makes for a slower, not faster workflow.
_________________
p.s. All this is not meant to imply that Blender's GUI is bad as a whole. Just that here and there it has some annoying defaults.

Posted: Fri Jun 16, 2006 3:42 pm
by etko
I agree with Ammusionist andithink it's the best solution.