LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)


LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#1
Hi all,

I just released the second beta of LDCad 1.4

It has a boatload of bug fixes and two new major features, namely OpenGL export and 'triangle angle' selection information the later helps you create something like this:

   

See also this video clip

The first let you export the current editor view (without GUI items) into any size your VGA card supports. For example here's an exported snapshot of the new 8071 example model.

   


8071 includes an advanced animation script example which makes it's mechanics come to live. You can view the exported version of it on youtube. And I also made a second clip showcasing some of the internals.

As animation might be a difficult thing to get started with I also made a two part tutorial video on making an animation from scratch.

Part 1 The model
and
Part 2 The script

Like always you'll find the latest LDCad version at

www.melkert.net/LDCad

The next version will probably be the definitive 1.4 version without any major features as I'm taking a little break from working on LDCad for the next couple of weeks.

Have fun.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#2
Great work! I tried the triangle solver, it works fine. Two questions:
- Your video shows sub bins in Technic bin, I don't seem to find that here?!
- How do I get parts snapping as described here http://forums.ldraw.org/showthread.php?t...6#pid11436 ? Or is this feature not ready for showtime yet?
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#3
Thanks,

Those technic groups are part of the 'sorted' (sorted by function) bin tree branch, accessible through the very first icon (little groups of parts picture) in the root group.

Part snapping is available since the 1.3 version, although it's more a guidance tool not full blown collision detecting etc. But it works quite well when used in combination with the relative grid.

You can enabled/disable it from the compass (GS/PS at the bottom) at any time or by using shift+p.

Do note not all parts have snapping info yet, currently I'm working towards having info for all parts in the sorted branch of the bin which is almost done having only a couple of subgroups remaining.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#4
Quote:Those technic groups are part of the 'sorted' (sorted by function) bin tree branch, accessible through the very first icon (little groups of parts picture) in the root group.
OK, clearly I need new glasses - sorry!
Quote:You can enabled/disable it from the compass (GS/PS at the bottom) at any time or by using shift+p.
I missed that too... but the keyboard shortcut is not in the quick manual.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#5
Yes the quick manual is a bit outdated on that front Smile

I'll add a new shortkey table page to the site soon, I will also rewrite the basic usage (aka quickmanual) at some point in the near future, probably in union with one or more video clips and pictures.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#19
I redone the shortcut keys table.

http://www.melkert.net/LDCad/docs/keys

I'm pretty sure it holds everything as I walked the keyboard handling source code.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#6
Looks very nice!
Although, I've barely used LDCad, but I'd like to try it out. Is there maybe a more extensive manual somewhere than the quick guide on your website? I haven't read it yet, it's probably very useful, but I'm just wondering Wink

I also have a two questions:
1- is there any way to resize the brick-selection images? I find them a little too big. Not that too big, but a little smaller would be much appreciated.
2- is there a way to view the steps and bricks in a list? Something like in MLCad or the Instructions Miner in SR3D Builder?
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#7
The brick sizes in the bin are determined by the current bin width and the current number of grid cell columns. 2 columns is the default but you can increase it by pressing '+' while the mouse is inside the part bin.

Used bricks in the current building step can be inspected/viewed by navigating to the special step content group in the part bin. Reachable from the root group by choosing the sessions group (icon with 'mpd' text in it), followed by going into the last group inside the sessions group (the one with '4' and a couple of beige bricks on it's icon).

That group will always show the current step's bricks in their used color and counts. If you need it often just point one of the last bin views (e.g. 6) to it and use the other ones for normal part navigating.

As for an extended manual, I'm afraid the quick manual is currently the only text available. I started writing a new (more extensive) one though.

In the meantime you could probably pick up the basic way of working from the more recent clips I made, I try to minimize keyboard usage in those.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#8
Hi Roland, thanks for the animation videos, I'm currently building something that I hope to animate at some point.

A couple requests or ideas if I may:

When hovering over the part area tabs (1-6), would it be possible for the text dialog to change showing what that tab has been filtered to? For example when working with technic parts I like to keep axles, beams, pins etc in the different tabs for quick reference. Except being old I forget which ones they are in. So if I hover over the tabs and if the text could change to say "Technic" with "Beam" or "Pin" that would be handy.

[Image: Screenshot%20from%202014-10-18%2016%3A05%3A38.png]

Also, is it possible to change the overall GUI theme of the program and it's areas. Being in Linux I like to use the darker "Pro" style look.

[Image: Screenshot%20from%202014-10-18%2016%3A18%3A07.png]
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OS = Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (64bit)
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#9
You mean display the filter text of the other view in the current view's filter text area (in green) just like the bin group caption does?

If so I like that, and it's a small change so I will add it to the next version. Thanks for the idea.

As for the colors, you are the second person in as many days who thinks the theme is to bright. 1.0 and 1.1 used a more gray theme but people were complaining about that too Smile

Therefore the current theme is somewhat taken from the official LEGO building booklets, but if you want you can change pretty much any color as the theme colors are read from the GUI/default/main.gui file. I think if you change all the 'BG' items in that file to something dark you basically get what your preview shows.

But be aware a future update will overwrite your changes, unless you copy the whole default folder and change the 'guiTemplate' section in the main.cfg file accordingly.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#10
Yep that's exactly what I meant, you got it. Thank you so much for adding it.

I know it's a tough thing coming up with pgm colors so they don't interfere with part colors etc. I'll play around with a few options and maybe we can share them or keep them someplace.
______________________________________________
OS = Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (64bit)
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#11
Here's a copy of the main.gui file that I quickly played with to match the theme of my Ubuntu PC. I find due to the darker shades it's a bit easier on my tired eyes after a while as well. It looks like the image below if anyone would like to try it out. So far I can't find any visual issues.


[Image: Screenshot%20from%202014-10-18%2020%3A52%3A08.jpg]


Attached Files
.zip   main (copy).gui.zip (Size: 1.53 KB / Downloads: 2)
______________________________________________
OS = Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (64bit)
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#13
It looks more like the older version now, maybe I'll add an internal color/theme editor one day to make this kind of tweaking easier.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#15
Roland Melkert Wrote:It looks more like the older version now, maybe I'll add an internal color/theme editor one day to make this kind of tweaking easier.

That would be an awesome feature, thank you.

A quick question, how do I select a whole bunch of parts at once? I think I'm looking for a click drag and select everything but that's just moving the camera.
______________________________________________
OS = Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (64bit)
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#16
Actually that's one key feature which is still missing, mainly because I keep postponing it as I'm not sure how to handle the depth while selecting.

I'll put it on my to do list for 1.5, If anyone has some ideas on this point I'm very open to suggestions.

In the mean time you might be able to partly select the parts needed by using the select menu.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#31
I think being able to select "connected" parts would satisfy this request. It's also a common feature of CAD SW. One approach could be to look at tolerance between parts to determine if they are "connected."
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#12
Ok, I've played a bit with LDCad and I have to say I quite like it and it looks very promising.
A few things I've found a bit annoying so far (and remember, I've only used it for about an hour now, so some of these things are just annoying because I'm new to it):
- I'd like to have a base/floor grid. I quite like the grid that moves, but a floor that would stay in place whatever camera position I'm at would be very nice, especially when at the start of building something, I can get quite confused about that's on top and what's at the bottom.
- I don't like the way you control the camera. I know the camera control as it is now is very normal, but still, I don't like it. SR3D Builder also as this camera control as default, but it has a setting to use "LDD-like" camera control and I like that so much more. I've tried to use this type for camera control in SR3D Builder for quite some time, but I wasn't able to use it as easy and as quickly as the "LDD-like" one. And, more importantly, can get quite dizzy with this type of camera control. I have no idea why....
- It would be nice if it would automaticly color the selected bricks when I select another color.

Other than those (personal) things, I haven't found anything that just doesn't work (bugs). Again, it looks very nice to me and I'm definitely trying to get more used to it Smile

Btw, thanks for the tip to use + in the parts bin, that was exactly what I was looking for!
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#14
I think we can solve some of your points.

- You could place a real baseplate part at 0,0,0 when starting a model or maybe use a custom placeholder .dat with something flat.

- The default camera is a trackball control, as far I know that's the 3D standard as it's impossible to 'gimbal lock' and thus gives you 100% rotational freedom. But if you like the LDD way better you can set the camera into a similar mode by clicking on the 'TBL' text at the right bottom of the compass (visible in Jason's picture above). While in that (SPN) mode you can't tilt left/right anymore and only rotate up to 180 degrees forward/backwards.

- A double click on a wheel segment will apply it imminently instead of just stetting the working color.

Hope that helps.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#17
Ya I thought about the depth issue as well. Maybe when evoked the selection box could be 3d ish allowing us to rotate the camera about adjusting all the angles before we execute the selection. Similar to when we crop a photo but more of a 3d perspective. Otherwise to start off with just a simple draw and select everything. Even just a keypress to disable the camera and allow a click and selection draw.
______________________________________________
OS = Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (64bit)
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#18
Bug report:

When I click on a previous 1-6 tab in the parts bin it sometimes it often doesn't switch the name to that filter tab unless I go back out then in again. Sometimes I need to click on a un-filtered tab to make it switch but then it will get stuck on the first filtered tab I select.

For example:

- I'm in tab 4 which is beams and tab 3 is pins.
- I click on tab 3 and the parts switch to pins but the filter name stays on beams.
- If I go back to tab 4 and then to tab 3 it might switch to pins.
- Sometimes I have to go to say tab 6 that isn't used to get it to switch.

Filters - Bush | Axle | Shock

[Image: Screenshot%20from%202014-10-19%2012%3A42%3A15.jpg][Image: Screenshot%20from%202014-10-19%2012%3A42%3A26.jpg][Image: Screenshot%20from%202014-10-19%2012%3A42%3A38.jpg]
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OS = Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (64bit)
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#20
Seems I've been a bit to greedy while recycling OpenGL resources. It seems to be visual only so it should not interfere with the filter results.

Thanks for reporting I'll fix it for the one.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#21
I'm trying to do an animation (rotor of 42020 helicopter B-model). Got it to work fine when I attach the script to the submodel referencing the rotor and crank submodels to be animated (no rocket science since it's just an adaptation of your video). But I can't seem to be able to do that from main level model, I guess I'm missing a referencing step... I have had a look at the example scripts that come with LDCad but it didn't help me much despite the detailed comments you provide Wink - I must say I am always struggling with high level languages ("My favorite programming language? Soldering iron!").

Edit... I am still interessed in the answer for projects to come, but I realized that the submodels I created (following official BIs) were not fitting mechanical entities and were thus not suitable anyway for animation. So I inlined intermediate submodel.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#23
Groups:
- how do I name groups? I see from your examples that it's possible, but I don't find this in the interface.
- Is it possible to add a part to an existing group?
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#26
Did you link to the subfile/model the reference to the rotor lives in? This is needed when the reference you want to use is not in the top level ldr (as ldc.subfile() links to toplevel by default), e.g.:

Code:
local roof=ldc.subfile('roof.ldr')
local rotor1=roof:getRef('rotorpart.dat', 1)
local rotor2=roof:getRef('rotorpart.dat', 2)

Alternatively you could create a nested group at top level, but if it's a single part or submodel you want to rotate walking the model tree is the better / cleaner solution.

Groups can be (re)named by opening the selection properties dialog, click on the coordinates panel or enter key while the group is selected.

You can add items to a group by selecting it, followed by also selecting the items you want to add from the grouping menu (listed one level up in the default sel rightclick menu) and then choose 'add selection to group'.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#28
Roland Melkert Wrote:Did you link to the subfile/model the reference to the rotor lives in? This is needed when the reference you want to use is not in the top level ldr (as ldc.subfile() links to toplevel by default), e.g.:

Code:
local roof=ldc.subfile('roof.ldr')
local rotor1=roof:getRef('rotorpart.dat', 1)
local rotor2=roof:getRef('rotorpart.dat', 2)
Obvious now that you tell me! And works fine... (42020-B2.zip)

Quote:Alternatively you could create a nested group at top level, but if it's a single part or submodel you want to rotate walking the model tree is the better / cleaner solution.
Maybe cleaner, but nested group has a big plus: it makes animation independant of subfiles organized for building sequence, not for mechanical functional groups.
I tried this idea, but I clearly have a group origin problem that make them rotate around world origin... Tried many things, but always the same result Sad
See 42020-B-nestedGr.zip

Quote:Groups can be (re)named by opening the selection properties dialog, click on the coordinates panel or enter key while the group is selected.
Why group properties entry doesn't appear in grouping menu you described below?

Quote:You can add items to a group by selecting it, followed by also selecting the items you want to add from the grouping menu (listed one level up in the default sel rightclick menu) and then choose 'add selection to group'.
I wouldn't have found this menu alone...
Same question for submodel: is it possible to move a part from top level to existing subfile?


Attached Files
.zip   42020-B-nestedGr.zip (Size: 2.4 KB / Downloads: 1)
.zip   42020-B2.zip (Size: 2.24 KB / Downloads: 1)
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#29
I'm sorry your script is correct minus a minor detail (you need to compensate for the non id group ori), but the groups should rotate around their main item position not the abs 0,0,0 origin like it does now.

It seems you discovered a bug concerning the nested groups ori only manipulations it goes wrong when the main group item is not at toplevel. I'll fix this for the next version, in the mean time you could try building the correct matrix your self or make the groups at the level their main part is at and rotate them from there.

Funny this never was a problem in my demo animations and yet it's the first thing a new user walks into Smile

On the group properties, it's not in the group menu because I thought it's more of a selection thing. But you are right that's probably the place where most people would look for it, so I will add a properties item to it.

You can move any part to any level in the model tree through nesting mode combined with a correct 'insertion target'. While in nesting mode click on any part you know is part of the model you want to move something to. Then click the 'insert into' text in the session panel. This will change the insertion target for all editing activities. Next you select the part(s) you want to move and select 'move to current level' from the selection menu.

I do this (probably way to fast Smile ) in the 2nd animation tutorial as I discovered I forgot to add the wheel's pin to the axle1 sub model.

Do note there is a known bug when you do this and the selection you want to move contains grouped items (will also be fixed in the next version). So it's provably best to un group any grouped things you want to move first.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#30
I've looked into this a bit more and it turns out it's not a group matrix bug, it's event related. Nesting is fun but all the internal matrix stuff introduced rounding problems in my early alpha's after a couple of frames so I implemented caching etc. Problem is the current version only initializes this cache when the start event is used in your script. This is why my examples all work fine Smile

Anyhow a workaround is very simple, just add a (dummy) start event handler. Here is your corrected script it should work on your existing model without problems now.

Code:
function register()
  local ani=ldc.animation('42020-B')
  ani:setLength(5)
  ani:setEvent('frame', 'onFrame')
  ani:setEvent('start', 'onStart')
end

function onStart()
  --grp ori bug prevention
end
  
function onFrame()
  local ani=ldc.animation.getCurrent()
  local mainSf=ldc.subfile()
  local ori=ldc.matrix()

  local angle=720*ani:getFrameTime()/ani:getLength()
  
  ax1=mainSf:getGroup('crank')
  ori:set(0, 0, 1, 0, 1, 0, -1, 0, 0) --group has non id main item
  ori:mulRotateAB(angle, 1, 0, 0)
  ax1:setOri(ori)
  
  local ax2=mainSf:getGroup('TopRotor')
  ori:set(0, 0, 1, -1, 0, 0, 0, -1, 0)  --group has non id main item
  ori:mulRotateAB(-angle, 0, 1, 0)
  ax2:setOri(ori)
  
  local ax3=mainSf:getGroup('TailRotor')
  ori:setRotate(angle, 1, 0, 0)
  ax3:setOri(ori)

end

register()

I also corrected for the non id placements. The next version won't need the workaround anymore.
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LDCad animation and groups
#64
Tried again to understand a tiny bit more the animations... and failed miserably.
I tried to animate the attached model using groups, but top rotor doesn't rotate correctly (it starts rotated 90°). Suspecting (wrongly) it might be an interaction with submodels, I flattened the model... to get a result even worse. Looking at the propriety of the groups, I guess I understand what happens: their default orientation is not identity, so the setOri wipes out their initial rotation. I guess I could solve this with a matrix multiplication, but it's much more complicated than I expected...

Otherwise, I tried also something else: animate flexible parts. I hoped that if I included a flex part path point to a group, this path point would be animated too with the group... doesn't work!


Attached Files
.zip   42020-B-anim.zip (Size: 4.23 KB / Downloads: 1)
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Re: LDCad animation and groups
#65
Got it to work, sort of: I redefined groups starting with parts that had identity rotation matrix (fortunately it was possible here...), so the groups inherit that orientation. But clearly that's not the right way to do things...


Attached Files
.ldr   42020-B-anim-flat-group2.ldr (Size: 7.68 KB / Downloads: 0)
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Re: LDCad animation and groups
#66
Philippe Hurbain Wrote:Tried again to understand a tiny bit more the animations... and failed miserably.
I tried to animate the attached model using groups, but top rotor doesn't rotate correctly (it starts rotated 90°). Suspecting (wrongly) it might be an interaction with submodels, I flattened the model... to get a result even worse. Looking at the propriety of the groups, I guess I understand what happens: their default orientation is not identity, so the setOri wipes out their initial rotation. I guess I could solve this with a matrix multiplication, but it's much more complicated than I expected...

Yes the setOri call is absolute and thus will only act as expected on groups/references using an identity matrix. To compensate for this you need to buffer the original orientation in the onStart function, like so:

Code:
function onStart()
  --grp ori bug prevention
  topRotorBaseOri=ldc.subfile():getGroup('TopRotor'):getOri()  
end

And then apply it on a per frame like so:

Code:
local ax2=mainSf:getGroup('TopRotor')
  ori:setRotate(-angle, 0, 1, 0)
  ori:mulBA(topRotorBaseOri)
  ax2:setOri(ori)

Note: I've flipped the sign of angle to make it spin the right way.

You could also buffer the group references in the start event, but this being a very small script it won't matter much speed wise.


Philippe Hurbain Wrote:Otherwise, I tried also something else: animate flexible parts. I hoped that if I included a flex part path point to a group, this path point would be animated too with the group... doesn't work!
Not yet indeed, I need to make some adjustments path/spring generation stuff in order to make that useful (fast enough etc). This is something I hope to do for 1.6 as part of the animation/script improvements.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#36
Quote:(you need to compensate for the non id group ori)
Could you elaborate on this? I see how to do this in your code, but I don't understand the rationale...

Quote:Funny this never was a problem in my demo animations and yet it's the first thing a new user walks into Smile
Monkey test, you know... Wink
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#37
Philippe Hurbain Wrote:
Quote:(you need to compensate for the non id group ori)
Could you elaborate on this? I see how to do this in your code, but I don't understand the rationale...

groupConfusedetOri replaces the group's main item matrix rotational part. This is fine when that's an id but if not you will loose the original orientation. To prevent that you need to ADD the animation rotation to the existing rest state. I usually use the start event to cache the rest state if needed, but in the above script i just copied and paste the rotation from the group properties dialog.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#22
I just realized that LDCad doesn't complain when it opens a model with missing part in library. No need to open a dialog box for each instance of a missing part (and request to press a button for each as in MLCad!!!), but some warning would be useful...
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#24
Maybe all missing parts could be saved in an array and displayed afterwards in one warning window?!

/Max
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#25
Yes, that's what LDView does, it works well...
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#27
Currently missing parts are only mentioned in the logfile and rendered using red crosses (which you can still move around etc).

I have been thinking about adding a special dialog or part bin group for listing missing files, but up to now I never really needed it myself and thus forgot all about it Smile
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#32
Would a in program, active model animation script building tool be worth looking into? For example you've made a simple model with an axle and gear. A user could select the script building tool which would pop up and ask you to fill in the basics such as animation time etc, hit next and it asks you what parts you want to animate, hit next and fill in the movements and in the background it would write the script. I'm not a programmer so I have no idea on the implications of what I'm asking so forgive me. I'm guessing many of the lines are the same for each animation, it's really just specific variables such as parts, movements etc. The basics such as which sub file or part locations could be pre-filled in the background when the part is selected. The very basic animation attributes such as animation time could also be asked during the set up.

I think keeping the user within the program and simplifying the process would make it more user friendly and approachable.

Sorry if this is too crazy of an idea.
______________________________________________
OS = Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (64bit)
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#33
I did consider adding a built in script editor, but dropped it thinking most people have some kind of favorite editor they like best when programming/scripting.

As for generating basic scripts, the problem is there are quite a few variables even for very simple model/animations. So the user would have to fill out a whole list of questions they might not completely grasp (like rotation vector directions etc).

With 1.5 I'm considering extending the scripting api into macro's so you can also generate (sub) models using script. With macro's in place it might be far more productive to let people write (and share) little scripts able to generate little starting scripts tailored to their own needs etc instead of having a couple of static wizards.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#34
Roland Melkert Wrote:I did consider adding a built in script editor, but dropped it thinking most people have some kind of favorite editor they like best when programming/scripting.

...With macro's in place it might be far more productive to let people write (and share) little scripts able to generate little starting scripts tailored to their own needs etc instead of having a couple of static wizards.

I hear ya, I guess I'm looking at it from a different perspective. I'm not a programmer, no nothing about scripting, just like to play with Lego. The requirement to program and script as a necessity for a huge and super cool feature of the program is going to limit it's usability for some. Again this is all a simple non programmers point of view. I'm your guy if you want usability suggestions for the simple person Wink
______________________________________________
OS = Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (64bit)
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#35
Maybe you should have a look at SR3Dbuilder that does simple animations without any programming.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#38
Philippe Hurbain Wrote:Maybe you should have a look at SR3Dbuilder that does simple animations without any programming.

I've used it and liked it. It's animation ability is what set it apart from MLCad but since the authors sad passing the future of it is uncertain. I was just thinking that LDCad would make an excellent alternative and I'm sure it will for many since it appears to be the only Lego CAD program actively supported (Windows and Linux). This is an awesome program and since I work in Ubuntu it saves me from dual booting. I can live without animations.

Keep up the great work Roland
______________________________________________
OS = Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (64bit)
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#39
I was watching your video and was amazed at how quickly you were able to place pieces. I'm just starting to get used to the select and "insert" a part method, I love it! I've 50% quicker now.

Is it possible to assign the insert function to the mouse somehow? I find I can do most things without using the KB but often have to reach and hit the insert button. Would be cool and even faster if say a middle click or some other button was able to insert.
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OS = Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (64bit)
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#40
Oh my goodness, the rubber, chain etc templates are so easy. Of course I tried it the super hard way first which took a while and was messy.

[Image: Screenshot%20from%202014-10-23%2023%3A20%3A46.png]
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OS = Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (64bit)
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#41
Quote:Oh my goodness, the rubber, chain etc templates are so easy.

Glad you like it.

Quote:Is it possible to assign the insert function to the mouse somehow?

The middle mouse button is already assigned, but I'm considering implementing custom key bindings in 1.5 (or maybe 1.6 depending on free time etc).

But it probably would still be faster to use the mouse/kb combo while working with angled technic models like the one from you picture above.
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Linux users question (was Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2...)
#42
Question to the Linux users:

I was playing around in the new Ubuntu 14.10 and Kubuntu 14.10 releases with beta 2, and I noticed some of the arrow keys seem to misbehave.

It's very weird because it seems to vary between Linux versions (Ubuntu does weird with left/right while Kubuntu only seems to dislike down.)

As far I know this was ok in the previous versions of Ubuntu/Kubuntu. Anyone having these problems on other distro's?
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Re: Linux users question (was Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2...)
#43
I've only used this on 12.04, soon to be 14.04. What's happening exactly?
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OS = Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (64bit)
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Re: Linux users question (was Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2...)
#44
It seems (e.g. during part rotation while inserting) to pause the gui on those key events freezing the gui until you click somewhere with the mouse or (sometimes) press the key again.
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Re: Linux users question (was Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2...)
#45
I have had that happen, but not very often. I also get a whole gui freeze in a similar fashion if I leave it open in the background and come back to the program some time later. Usually takes a click or more to wake it up again.
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OS = Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (64bit)
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Re: Linux users question (was Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2...)
#46
I've noticed it on Slackware. I thought it was my keyboard (which is a it dodgy.)
It's the down key for me.
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Re: Linux users question (was Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2...)
#50
I think i fixed it.

It seems to be caused by the default ((k)ubuntu menu nav) handling for those keys which the new version now blocks for the 3D panel.
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Re: Linux users question (was Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2...)
#51
Right on, glad it wasn't too elusive an issue.
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OS = Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (64bit)
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#47
What determines the angle at which parts enter the workspace from the parts bin? I'm working on a project with some angles as you know. I'm doing something wrong causing parts to come in at all wonky angles causing me to have to change the placement mode to fine and rotation to 1 degree to correct them.
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OS = Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (64bit)
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#48
Parts are always inserted using the orientation of the last selection. You can reset the ori for the 'floating' part by pressing 'home' before placement. Or by ctrl+home (on a selection) after placement.

Also while working with angled models like yours you'll probably want to change the grid orientation now and then to match alignment with the thing you want to add stuff to (e.g. one beam parallel to another.). This is done using 'o' on a selection, when done use 'o' again while nothing is selected to go back to the normal grid.

The upcoming updated manual will address this way of working a deeper.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#49
Ah, I get it, thank you. I need to start using that home key more often. Maybe I'll make a keyboard overlay or print out a cheat sheet or something.
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OS = Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (64bit)
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#52
I made a third animation tutorial clip while testing Beta 2 some more myself.

If anyone would like to see a clip of something specific please let me know.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#53
Is there any way to get the program to keep the parts bin filters upon restart?
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OS = Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (64bit)
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#54
At the moment the filters are not remembered per view, only the default dialog settings (except the text) are kept between sessions.

With 1.5 I'm planning some changes to the bins so I might also change / expand the filter io.

An alternative could be making your own bin groups, but you would need to get pretty familiar with the pbg files to do it.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#55
Is there a way to make the part icons differ from library icons?
I never seam to learn when I could grab a part, or if a click just opens a subgroup.

Why does it loose the set rotation point every time I zoom?
I want to choose a brick in my model and then have it to be the rotationcenter of every move I make
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#56
Quote:Is there a way to make the part icons differ from library icons?

There is if the group has a png associated with it, other wise the statusbar text should give insight on the item.

Maybe I'll also add some extra indication to group 'tiles' when applying the planned bin changes for 1.5, thanks for the suggestion.

Quote:Why does it loose the set rotation point every time I zoom?

The zoom function, by default, tries to keep the thing your mouse points to at the same place (zoom to cursor). If you don't like that behavior you can change it from the prefs/editing menu to plain center of screen zooming (zoom to center) for example.

Also to center on a brick press 'c' while it's selected.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#57
The more I play with LDCad, the more I like it... I created a Technic model with a lot of weird angles, and thanks to snapping it was quite easy (and reliability of the program itself is excellent).

I am now trying to add a PF-M motor with cable, that was easy enough but now I want to properly route the cable but I can't seem to be able to add control points. Using insert key as described here does *something* but I can't see any new editable control points ?
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#58
Glad you are liking it.

Besides a known (and fixed in the upcoming version) bug concerning wrong editing pin position when clicking on e.g. the elec brick part of the motor, all should work like described in the 1.2 intro text.

Only difference with the 1.2 version is you now should use the nesting mode after the generic placement is done. While in nesting the control points become visible and whenever you press insert while one is currently (indirectly through a group) selected a new one will be added after the selected one (or in front if it's the last point in a non looped path).

It does not matter which nesting level (the 'insert into' model, although best left at toplevel) you are using as the insertion code makes an exception on that while inserting path points. That way you don't have to worry about it, while modelling multiple hoses through nesting.

If this is not working for you you might have something else selected when pressing insert, maybe the hose's skin? (noticeable by the text 'click anywhere to insert new skin meta').

I'm planning to release the definitive 1.4 this weekend, I could also upload a small video clip demonstrating generic path template usage it might make things more clear (as the current pneuhose demo clip is somewhat old and I only move the start/end points around in it)
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#59
Quote:If this is not working for you you might have something else selected when pressing insert, maybe the hose's skin? (noticeable by the text 'click anywhere to insert new skin meta').
OK, that was the problem - I was inserting new skin meta (what the purpose of this?). But it's quite misleading, since you are working on cable it's tempting to select it!
Another question: is it possible to close current file? to revert it to previous saved state?
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#60
Quote:I was inserting new skin meta (what the purpose of this?).
Skin meta's are used to define what LDraw part is used to plot the path and how it's to spread out etc. You can have multiple skin meta's as a path might need multiple dynamically placed LDraw parts (e.g. the space flex hose which has a left, mid and right one).


Quote:is it possible to close current file? to revert it to previous saved state?
Not currently, but due to the amount of people asking for this lately I'm strongly considering adding full file reload (which is also needed for closing files) to 1.5. In the mean time you could just 'undo' all the way back to the start as there is no limit on the number of undo steps.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#61
I've been using LDCad a bit more lately, and I start to like it quite a lot. Great job!
To really get the hang of all the ins and outs of the program, I'm now building set 76023 The Tumbler in LDCad.

So far, it's going quite well. I was wondering if you could incorporate a mirror building mode like in SR3D Builder. So, when the user starts the mirror building, the user can place a mirror and then everything that's palced on one side, gets mirrored on the other side.
I would really like such a feature in LDCad.

Btw, is there a setting to change the mouse-wheel button behaviour? Currently, when I click the mousewheel, it opens up the selection properties, but I'd like it to be what is currently shift+RMB.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#62
76023 has lots of angled things, should be fun Smile just remember 'o' is your best tool for angled placement even when part snapping is enabled.

Quote:I was wondering if you could incorporate a mirror building mode like in SR3D Builder.
Seems like a useful feature and shouldn't be too hard to implement unless you also want auto left/right wings etc. I'll put it on my nice to have to do list.

Quote:is there a setting to change the mouse-wheel button behaviour?
Currently all key/mouse bindings are static, but I did plan to add custom key binding to 1.5 but at the moment I'm leaning towards implementing full file reloading first. So maybe 1.6 or maybe I'll add just a simple 'what does the middle button do' multiple choice option to 1.5.
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Re: LDCad 1.4 Beta 2 (win+linux)
#63
Roland Melkert Wrote:Seems like a useful feature and shouldn't be too hard to implement unless you also want auto left/right wings etc. I'll put it on my nice to have to do list.

Such a feature will need auto left/right parts otherwise it becomes distinctly less useful.

It seems that LDCad has come a long way indeed since I last played with it - I really must give it another go.

EDIT: And now having read through the 1.4 release thread, I'll definitely make my next LDraw project in LDCad (though that next project might be some way away yet - if only I had the time to spare to play with this, and build physically, and do all my other hobbies!)

Owen.
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