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* September 04, 2017, 12:41:28 AM

Just done my first animation with anilab 5 in wireframe and it works ok, this test was to understand more about anilab and how I could use for mechanical design simulation for rotating, moving, attaching and referencing parts within groups of parts.


Currently using the script editor mode as most of the samples that come with tc 2016 are clear to follow whereas the key frames editor mode is a little more confusing as I haven't found any examples to study.

Are there any examples or samples that include both the script and key frames editors to study?

Just wondering if I trim the file size from  138,176kb down to something more manageable?
( there is 393 frames within this test file alone )

What settings for the compression work best?

What if any templates should I consider?

These animations will end up on Youtube hopefully!

Can you save all the actor commands into one text file for reference from say running a script?

How do you integrate/run scripts via the custom script editor window?

Thanks

Daz

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Darryl
TCW 2015 Platinum, TCW 2016 Platinum, TCW 2017 Platinum, Graficalc & Windows 10
using Lightworks & Redsdk


* September 04, 2017, 01:55:28 AM
#1
Hi Darryl

Re - Are there any examples or samples that include both the script and key frames editors to study?

I can't think of any samples off hand, some notes on keyframes are on the Wiki here scroll down to keyframes

##Edited## attached is a quick (rough) one just done using keyframes with commands for the wheels (v21 with Lightworks),  if you animate it, use draft not quality,  one advantage of keyframes is that if you click a number over the top of the frame squares, it will highlight a column, then click show frame icon one can move through the animation checking for collision, obviously any commands won't show up though, right clicking a blue dot (keyframe) of the ball and choosing properties, some are set to accelerate and some decelerate. commands on the other hand offer a lot more control than  keyframes, but certainly both ways have the usefulness.  ##end edit##

Re - Just wondering if I trim the file size from  138,176kb down to something more manageable? ( there is 393 frames within this test file alone )

What I do is, use AVI for the animation file, then open in a movie editor, and export as MP4 for you tube,  AVI does produces huge file.

Re - What settings for the compression work best?

Personally (if using windows 10) I would advise against using AVI compression within AnimationLab, it does work, but I've had problems playing them back in Windows 10, often getting n error message.

Re - What if any templates should I consider?

Use whatever template you normally use, I use a custom metric one, AL uses units not inches or mm, so Move 10 0 0 will move 10 inches or 10 mm depending on what is set up as the normal space units

Re - Can you save all the actor commands into one text file for reference from say running a script?

Yes, expand the play menu and choose save to file, note that keyframes are 'hard coded' so it will save scripts but not the location of any keyframes.  Wiki page

Re - How do you integrate/run scripts via the custom script editor window?

There is an example on the Wiki here
 the TCW file for the flame (shown on the wiki) is on the forum here

« Last Edit: September 04, 2017, 06:40:56 AM by Andy H »

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* September 04, 2017, 02:15:27 PM
#2
Thanks Andy that was exactly what I was looking for, more info on how to use anilab.

Ok I will try the mp4 video software and see what file sizes are produced after conversion from avi.

Didn't know how that AL uses the space units depending on setup, but I did discover that if you want to move an object a specific distance with suprising accuracy just divide the distance to move by the number of frames for this task eg:
need to move an object 10mm and display this over 15 frames, therefore 10/15 = 0.6666667, so move by 0.6 per frame.

Wow, thanks for your contribution to the wiki pages that's awesome.

Daz 
 

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Darryl
TCW 2015 Platinum, TCW 2016 Platinum, TCW 2017 Platinum, Graficalc & Windows 10
using Lightworks & Redsdk


* September 04, 2017, 02:30:19 PM
#3
Andy Im still on the net and havent tried your tips yet, but when you save the scenario to file does that save all actors scripts into one file only?

Or does it just save the highlited actors script only?

Daz

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Darryl
TCW 2015 Platinum, TCW 2016 Platinum, TCW 2017 Platinum, Graficalc & Windows 10
using Lightworks & Redsdk


* September 04, 2017, 02:42:59 PM
#4
Dont have any of the anilab menu options that are listed to by the wiki page?
Im using anilab v5.

Daz

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Darryl
TCW 2015 Platinum, TCW 2016 Platinum, TCW 2017 Platinum, Graficalc & Windows 10
using Lightworks & Redsdk


* September 04, 2017, 03:42:22 PM
#5
Hmm, that's confusing, just wondered did you press and hold down the play icon to reveal the menu, other than that I'm struggling to think of anything.

the script when saved looks like
[body1]   (Identifier)
Name=body1  (tells TC what actor is used) 
State=1  (always set to 1  - no idea why) 
Commands=0   (number of separate commands used by the actor)
[bwheels]
Name=bwheels
State=1
Commands=1
0=1 200 Rotate 0 30 0  (a command used by the actor) 
NOTE - AL starts at '0', so with only 1 command, the first one is '0='
[fwheels]
Name=fwheels
State=1
Commands=1
0=1 200 Rotate 0 30 0
[ball1]
Name=ball1
State=1
Commands=0

it only shows the script not any keyframes

if you are still not able to see the save,  I'd suggest have the serial number handy - uninstall AL, download and install the latest 2016 version  if you are using TC2016 (or navigate to another TC version) from the update section of the forum (2016 is here )

## EDIT ## forgot to mention - if you get it to save and are viewing in notepad (I use notepad and Excel) one needs to select 'all files' in notepad to be able to select the .sc file for viewing ## End Edit ##
« Last Edit: September 04, 2017, 03:53:27 PM by Andy H »

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* September 04, 2017, 07:39:28 PM
#6
Did not know that you had to press n hold the button to show other menu options. Thanks for tour time and tips. Will now do further testing.

Daz

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Darryl
TCW 2015 Platinum, TCW 2016 Platinum, TCW 2017 Platinum, Graficalc & Windows 10
using Lightworks & Redsdk


* September 05, 2017, 01:14:16 AM
#7
This test path.gif just happens to know where the 3D polyline starts and stops and follows it quite simply.
What I want to know is:
1. can I stop the the box following the 3D polyline at a given point in time or specific frame?
2. do some other actions on this BOX actor like rotating or addding/attaching other actors etc?
3. then resume moving the BOX actor along the 3D polyline at the last point stopped at?
4. then repeat steps 1, 2 & 3 over and over?

test path.gif

Daz

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Darryl
TCW 2015 Platinum, TCW 2016 Platinum, TCW 2017 Platinum, Graficalc & Windows 10
using Lightworks & Redsdk


* September 05, 2017, 01:50:46 AM
#8
Whilst technically you can do those things, I suspect you would have a lot of 'trial and error', the actor uses percentages as the start and end points of a path, so you could for example

frame 0 - 20 - slide along path start at 0%, go to 30%
frame 40 - 60 - slide along path start at 30% go to 100%

the problem would be converting the percentage to actual units, easy with straight lines, but in your example you would have to manually calculate at what percentage of the polyline is the top of the third triangle for example,  so it would probably be easier to use multiple paths so one can easily tell where the start and stop points are, so slide along path one - stop for a bit - slide along path 2..

for adding other objects, rather than Boolean adding, the first object should be made into a group in TC (even if its just one box), then one can use the add to group command on the second object, so it will follow along with the 'parent' object.,   

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* September 05, 2017, 03:13:56 PM
#9
That avi file size was cut down to 804kb from 137,000kb wow.

I remember reading that you use excel as an editor for plotting actors actions etc. I presume to simulate frames and actors actions based on timing etc.

Has that worked ok?

How do you use excel for the scenario  editor?

Can you share any tips here?

Thanks
Daz

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Darryl
TCW 2015 Platinum, TCW 2016 Platinum, TCW 2017 Platinum, Graficalc & Windows 10
using Lightworks & Redsdk


* September 06, 2017, 01:12:07 AM
#10
In the samples folder for anilab Ive got the gifs for the cars & swirl demo, but not the tcw files. Can anyone provide them?


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Darryl
TCW 2015 Platinum, TCW 2016 Platinum, TCW 2017 Platinum, Graficalc & Windows 10
using Lightworks & Redsdk


* September 06, 2017, 03:59:41 AM
#11
I remember reading that you use excel as an editor for plotting actors actions etc. I presume to simulate frames and actors actions based on timing etc.

I use excel when using commands with a lot of actors, it takes longer to set up originally, but then if timings need altering its quick to just change the cells in excel rather than change all the commands for say 30 to 40 actors, from Excel I copy and paste into notepad, and save from notepad as a .sc file, then load into AnimationLab.

in Excel I set up cells like the attached, once the second section is done, its easy to drag/replicate them down for as many as required, then alter as necessary, as I say its longer to set up but quicker when alterations are needed, I don't bother if there are not many actors - like 10 actors.

In the samples folder for anilab I've got the gifs for the cars & swirl demo, but not the tcw files. Can anyone provide them?

Not in my installation neither, (I don't even have the swirl.gif file),   I haven't got AL4 installed so can't check that version - maybe someone else can check AL4,  but the AnimationLab.chm help file gives instructions on how to produce them, the swirl uses a custom script so could be interesting to play / recreate with that one.

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