[Sidefx-houdini-list] Shelf Question

Peter Robbinson probbins at sympatico.ca
Sun Nov 16 20:20:54 EST 2008

Counter-intuitive as it may be it is only the experienced, veteran 
production artist that can determine if an easy method is indeed 


Pablo Giménez wrote:
> Of course at certain levels the application for some users that just need to
> use custom tools is not so important.
> But tell this to the TDs.
> If things can be easy do it easy, if people at certain level don't need to
> know all the gory details of the asset, simply apply it learn how to use it
> and deliver shots, why to make things more complicated, is not a matter of
> being more or less like maya, is a metter to provide an easy access to
> things that should being easy and fast.
> Snd sorry, MEL scripts integration in Maya is very far from how tools are
> integrated in Houdini, in Houdini they really integrate in the whole tool in
> Maya is like a chaos of code snippets scattered across all the pipeline.
> The only thing in my opnion that needs shelf scrips is to be saved in OTLs
> as other assets, I think they are assets by themselves, and not to be in a
> different file. This will simplify a lot the process of manteining shelves
> and alse allows to have custom operators and their correspondng shelf
> scripts in the same location (ok you can do it now if the script is defined
> in the operator, but not if the script is independent of any operator, I
> think).
> 2008/11/17, Gene Dreitser <keyframe at rogers.com>:
>> I hear what you are saying -- that said, I'd argue that the reason this
>> works is because the pipeline scripts themselves are well thought out,
>> rather then their specific binding to a GUI control.  The reason it's sleek
>> and sexy is certainly not because of the shelf -- it's just a place to store
>> things after all, right?
>> Bear in mind that these tools have been designed specifically for your
>> company's workflow -- therefore they work.  If, however, you attempted to
>> pick up someone else's 'smart tools' -- do you feel that they would function
>> just as well within your given contraints/pipeline?  My guess is, not so
>> much -- not beyond a trivial level anyway.
>> The Million or so assorted MEL scripts presently scattered all over the the
>> internet is strong evidence to suggest that perhaps these flashes of
>> brilliance aren't as transportable as they sounds in principal.
>> There is no question that having similar looking buttons in one app and
>> another will make users feel more comfortable migrating, but that's not a
>> feature, is it?  More to the point, if the pipeline is so well thought out,
>> and completely abstracts the user from the apps, why should anyone care what
>> app they are using?  at that stage, they are users of your custom tools more
>> so then Houdini, or Maya...
>> G
>> ________________________________
>> From: Andrew D Lyons <tstexture at gmail.com>
>> Speaking from the perspective of someone working at a large studio
>> that was originally Maya - but then went Houdini - shelves, and the UI
>> overhaul in general seem to have helped to bridge the transition for
>> new users with next-to-no Houdini experience. Our whole pipeline is
>> written in Python, and all our interfaces to that pipeline have
>> manifested as shelf buttons. Like many big studios, we have a paradigm
>> where expert TD's make shrink-wrapped tools for novice artists to use
>> in mass production. For that shelves are perfect. We have a very
>> similar configuration of shelf buttons in both Maya and Houdini.
>> That's kind of cool for new users.
>> Cheers
>> --
>> =======================================
>> Andrew D Lyons | Digital Artist | http://www.tstex.com
>> =======================================
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