[Sidefx-houdini-list] New obfuscation of Lookat - am I the only one saddened?

Floyd Gillis floyd at afcg.com
Tue May 9 20:55:00 EDT 2017

Hi Andy,

In case it wasn't clear, my "K.I.S.S." reply was aimed at our good 
friends at SESI... not your post.



On 5/8/17 7:10 PM, Floyd Gillis wrote:
> K.I.S.S.
> On 5/8/17 6:45 PM, Andy Nicholas wrote:
>> Uggh. Yep. Couldn't agree more. I love that it's in CHOPs (I wasn't a 
>> fan of the original design - too black box), but it's a poor attempt 
>> at simplifying how people interact with it for so many reasons.
>> So sure, the GUI presents a simple interface to applying contraints 
>> (aside from the annoying viewport picking). But in 90% of cases you 
>> still need to modify the look-at axis or change the target object, so 
>> you're going to have to drill down anyway and understand the network 
>> (that you didn't create) to change parameters. So why try to hide it 
>> in the first place? Like you guys said already, it needs to add some 
>> spare parameters at the top level so you have direct access.
>> Looking at the top level object, you're able to tell if an object has 
>> constraints, but you have no idea which constraints it actually has. 
>> Not to mention that you can't remove them or change their order of 
>> evaluation. If you add multiple constraints and drill down to look at 
>> the CHOP network, unless you're quite familiar with constraint CHOP 
>> networks, you'll still have no idea what constraints you have.
>> Lastly, it's the old case of being able to add nodes into a tree with 
>> a menu system, but good luck if you change or customise the tree 
>> yourself. The result of menu operations probably won't give expected 
>> behaviour any more.
>> Sorry to the hardworking SideFX dev team but I find the motivations 
>> behind designs like this hard to understand. It's usually as a result 
>> of people saying "it's too complicated, can we simplify" without 
>> thinking it through. Like I said, I don't have a problem with CHOP 
>> constraints,  just how it's hidden behind a pointlessly over 
>> simplified interface. It just doesn't add anything.
>> On 07/05/2017 18:27, Peter Bowmar wrote:
>>> Hi,
>>> Just curious if I'm the only one saddened by the new, much clumsier, 
>>> Lookat
>>> "constraints" on Cameras, Lights etc?
>>> I recall commenting on how the multiple levels of obfuscation and 
>>> lack of
>>> UI saddened me before, but now that I actually want to use it for
>>> something... wow it really slows down the workflow.
>>> -You _must_ use a shelf tool for something that previously was a single
>>> drag and drop operation. Massive workflow slowdown.
>>> -the actual parameters that get created are buried on nodes inside the
>>> object itself (!!) so both obfuscation and a massive workflow 
>>> slowdown as
>>> you jump contexts
>>> I get that it's "more powerful" in the sense it's a CHOPnet you can
>>> intercept and manipulate, and I think that's great. However the 
>>> tradeoffs
>>> aren't worth it since you don't actually manipulate the CHOP data in 
>>> 99% of
>>> simple "LookAt" cases.
>>> I'm not opposed to the actual calculation being done in CHOPs, I 
>>> love CHOPs
>>> like any self-respecting Houdini zealot.
>>> I just the think the way the UI and requirement for a shelf-tool has 
>>> been
>>> done is a massive leap backwards and makes me sad :(
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