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PostPosted: Sun Oct 25, 2020 10:58 pm 

Joined: Wed Jun 05, 2019 2:17 pm
Posts: 18
This morning I made some quick notes of things which have been on my mind for a long time. These are small interface issues that likely could be implemented with little effort but would be oh so helpful, IMHO.



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When experimenting with settings, it's always handy to have some absolute reference point in which to return should you not like the changes you've made. The undo function isn't powerful enough to track many changes. Instead, I suggest a couple of "reset options".

  • "Reset to default"
    In the Node Editor, it would be nice if there was an option to go back to default values for the various transforms. For example, if you hit a "reset to default" for Linear, it would change it back to 1. Often I experiment with different settings within a particular transform (or maybe I even change transforms and want to go back) and I forget what the default was.

  • "Reset to before last change"
    When experimenting and making changes to a transform, it would be handy to go back to the last change for that particular transform. Using the above Linear example again -- Imagine that you have it set to 1.45 and you decided to experiment with different values incrementally and move it to 20. It would be nice if you could hit one button and immediately sent it back to 1.45 (not the default 1). You would be able to revert to any change you made until you move to a different transform. Of course, the Linear example is primitive as there's just one setting for Linear. Some transforms have many options and it would be nice to go back to where they were without having to constantly save and resave your world.

Maybe this could even be accomplished using some kind of new window like the Parameter Browser where you could capture a history of settings and "go back" to previous versions (maybe it'd save a history of 5-10...or even unlimited) number of previous parameters. This would save users much time and frustration.

As a side note, these options would be handy in other places as well. For example, in the Node Editor, in Pre afline, it would be handy to change the x & y angles back to 0, 90 and the X & Y lengths back to 1 and the Offset back to 0 at the click of a button......and to be able to revert back to the settings via the same "Reset to before last change". This provides the ability to experiment with a myriad of settings without totally losing your previous work.


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  • Under Render Settings in the World Browser, it would be nice to have a number of common settings available in a drop-down box. Here are a few suggestions for common settings

      - Work Mode - Low-resolution 640x480, AA 1 which would be handy for laptops and small screens. It's fast and good for simply working on a world

      - 1080, 2K, 4k modes - resolutions and aspect ratios common for typical full-screen tv and monitor displays.

      - Custom *presets* - Ability to specify your own presets that the user uses frequently

      - Custom settings - Setting options as they exist today...where you can change parameters on the fly.

Why this is needed: It's frustrating and time-consuming to change resolutions up and down between high and low-resolution settings to make small changes. It's even worse when you forget to select or deselect the Lock Aspect Ratio box and wind up getting your aspect ratios all mixed up. Simply having a drop-down could speed up this process from 1 min to 1 second.



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  • Better tutorials and project examples.
    Learning Chaotica is difficult. I've been playing with it for a few years now and I love it, but the learning curve is substantial and I know I've only scratched the surface of what it can do. The instructions on how to use the main features (such as rendering and editing video) are severely lacking. Even worse, information on the theory of Chaotica and how pieces are parts go together to create something non-random is virtually non-existent. There are a few tutorials scattered about on the net and those are helpful, but they are scattered and are often not written for new users. We need something that teaches basic concepts of Chaotica.

    If new users (or old ones) had better instructions, perhaps via step-by-step projects, the software would be more accessible to more people and would probably even experience better sales.

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  • Don't make the Transform Browser disappear every time you select a new transform. Sometimes it's fun or interesting just to use the browser to experiment with different transforms. When it disappears, I'm constantly having to go open it again and again just to select the next transform. If it remained open (like other windows in Chaotica), I could simply select transform after transform until I found one I liked.
  • Add the names of each transform in the Transform Browser. I know the name is given via mouse-over, but that takes time to hover and get the name. Additionally, if you're just scrolling up and down the Transform Browser to find something specific, it would be handy to see the names.

  • Transform Browser could be sortable by type and by alphabetical order. I'm honestly unsure if there's any order to it at the moment, but ordering by type and by name would be awful handy to find a transform quickly. The same is true with the Transform Type in the Node Editor.

  • While we can use the mouse scroll wheel to scroll through menu items and parameter settings, it would be nice to use the keyboard arrow keys to do the same. At present, we can only use the up and down arrows to cycle through numerical values of parameters. One of the old versions of Chaotica (maybe only in version 1.X), you could also cycle through Transform Type. Using the arrow keys (rather than the drop-down or the mouse scroll wheel) would make it fast and convenient to cycle through and experiment with various Transform Types in the Node Editor.


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2020 12:09 am 

Joined: Mon Jun 19, 2017 1:51 pm
Posts: 191
Thanks DoctorChaos,
looks like a lot of good suggestions there. I'll take another look at these after Chaotica 2 is officially out the door.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 12, 2021 1:03 am 

Joined: Mon Jun 19, 2017 1:51 pm
Posts: 191
"Add the names of each transform in the Transform Browser. I know the name is given via mouse-over, but that takes time to hover and get the name. Additionally, if you're just scrolling up and down the Transform Browser to find something specific, it would be handy to see the names.

Transform Browser could be sortable by type and by alphabetical order. I'm honestly unsure if there's any order to it at the moment, but ordering by type and by name would be awful handy to find a transform quickly. The same is true with the Transform Type in the Node Editor."

These 2 are done for next build, or to be precise, transform thumbs are sorted by alphabetical order now.


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