[Sidefx-houdini-list] Getting info on the predefined variables

Andy Nicholas andy at andynicholas.com
Sun Oct 14 09:54:33 EDT 2007

It's interesting to see someone else having some of the same issues that I
had while trying to get into Houdini. I found it quite overwhelming having
to deal with the expression language and HScript, it's easy to get the two
mixed up.

I also had problems with knowing which variables would work in expressions
in which nodes and in which syntax i.e. the $ syntax and using ch(), the
difference between local and global variables, etc. I think/hope that I've
resolved my confusion, but it was a constant source of frustration when I
was learning.

Just for the record, I'd love to see a compiled help (.chm) version of the
Houdini docs. It supports much better contents, index, and search
functionality. In fact, I ended up generating one myself based on exhelp
just for expressions which proved to be very useful.

I've not started with H9 yet, but now it's using Python, do people think
that this has made everything a lot easier and clearer, or has it just
served to muddy the waters futher?

BTW, I really welcome the tools roadmap document that's just been
produced. It'd be great if we could have something similar to act as a
roadmap for expressions. Just so that we could have a single concise
resource that people can turn to when something doesn't work how they


> It's not a bug actually, more a search engine limitation used by help
> browser. Same thing happens with odforce.net search for example.
> Although another issue is that things like global variables should appear
> more apparently in Help.
> This is a long story... ;)
> cheers,
> sy.
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