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Breeze Designer

3D Modelling and Design
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Breeze Designer Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is the latest version of Breeze Designer?

The latest version is 2.0.9 also known as version 2 beta release 9. This version includes an updated install package, which address many of the earlier install prioblems. It is recommended to install Windows NT service pack 3 or later before installing Breeze Designer under Windows NT.

Q: Unable to install Breeze Designer

There is a known InstallSHIELD bug that causes the Breeze Designer installation to abort on some machine configurations. This problem is under investigation. If in doubt, try closing other applications before starting the install process. A full zipped copy of the current Breeze Designer is also available within the SDK for those that encounter this problem and would like to install Breeze Designer manually.

Q: How to change radius of spheres, cones, and torus?

Object are created 1x1x1 unit (mostly) by default. Simple objects can be scaled to suit. Objects that have multiple elements, such as a torus can be adjusted through the object properties dialog.

Q: How to change the text in a text object?

The text used to generate the text object may be adjusted through the object properties dialog. Use the font button in this dialog to set the font type and attributes. Some font attributes are not supported by the font geometry generator.

Q: The positive z axis in Breeze is out from the screen, where it is into the screen in povray by default.

This is definable in both Breeze Designer and POV-RAY. Scenes exported from Breeze will appear correctly either way. To change this within Breeze goto settings/view/Left handed view

Q: Where is are Win32s runtime files located

ftp://ftp.microsoft.com/softlib/MSLFILES/PW1118.EXE

There have had a many reports of stability problems running Breeze Designer under Win32s. Some people have no problems, others have extreme problems. The general consensus is that the program runs much better under Win95 or WinNT. Under either of these platforms code to preform threaded operations will also be active.

Breeze Designer 2.0.6 and later no longer support the Win32s environment, as the support have been removed from the Microsoft Visual C++ compiler.

Q: What options are there for previewing scenes

There are three methods for displaying shaded objects in the preview window; 1. the in-built pview code (soon to be optional), which is VERY basic. 2. to use Intel's 3DR interface, which until reciently was the best option for Windows 95 users. 3. to use OpenGL which gives an extra option of showing textures in the preview scene. Users using Win311 with Win32s are limited to option 1.

Q: How can I add textures from the POV-RAY include files to the Breeze textures list, without recreating them in breeze?

From the texture dialog click on the add button while holding the control key. This will allow you to add to the texture list. This feature applies to Breeze Designer 2.0.7 and later.

Or you can manually edit the Breeze.Tex file (its a text file) Each line is an entry in the texture list. To add further texture add a line similar to; 1,0,Texture,TC1000,,,0,0,0 The texture name, in this case "Texture" will appear in the list. This assumes the textures are in an include aleady included in the POV export ie colors.inc or textures.inc The facility to add new includes is expected in the next release (6)

Q: Problems with rotation and scaling

There seems to be a bug involving cylinders and rotation and sizing in the rel 2 beta 4 version. If I drop a cylinder and use the properties to rotate it 90 deg. about one axis, then double click and re-size the cylinder, the cylinder is drawn correctly. However, when saved and re-loaded the cylinder re-displays as a different size (usually two axis' have changed, in opposite sizes from the expected change.)

This is due to the mouse operations using composite scale and transformation calculations (for speed) instead of using a full matrix transformation. I expect to revise these calculations in the next release (8). For now, if you go back into properties and select ok, the object will be re-calculated using the full transformation matrix. This should leave the object how it should look, if exported or re-loaded.

Q: How do I do checker board textures

  • Select add from the textures dialog
  • Enter the name of your new texture (no spaces) or use the default
  • Select advanced
  • Expand pigment
  • Select checker
  • Select your two colours and check enable
  • Select Ok, or switch to general and press render to see a sample
This assumes you have the renderer installed and configured

Q: How do I do fog textures

Similar to above ie though the advanced tab

Q: How do I do image maps

  • Select add from the textures dialog
  • Enter the name of your new texture (no spaces) or use the default
  • Select the map tab
  • Select or enter the file name for the image map
  • Set type to image map
  • Select Ok, or switch to general and press render to see a sample

Q: Text quality

I have one question when building text files. My renderings of text have jagged edgdes after rendering. Is there a way or a command in the program to cut down on the jaggies. I have searched the help files and have not found a way to clean up the text. Any help.

Try increasing the font size (48 or 72 point is good) and scale the text back to the required size. This will create smoother text, but larger files. To enter in POV textures try,

  • Select add from the textures dialog
  • Enter the name of your new texture (no spaces) or use the default
  • Select advanced
  • Enter in the section elements or select the free form tab and paste the texture in (set enable).
  • Select Ok, or switch to general and press render to see a sample

Q: How do I use use CSG operations

The current CSG implementation is not very obvious. The CSG operations work on objects that are in groups. Once you have created a group the CSG operations may be applied to members of the group. Use Tools/Select Objects to see the order of the members in the group (and the group token itself). Groups are only a logical notion. See the csg_art sample for a few variations on CSG. Remember to create the base object in a CSG group first. For example if you create a box, then cylinder (though the box), create a group with both objects. Select the properties of the first object and select operation and set it to difference. You will have created a CSG object of a box with a cylinder hole. This can be seen when the scene is rendered. The Csg_art sample is a good reference to see how CSG operations work.

Q: Error trying to execute POV-Ray from within Breeze Designer

After the POV-Ray directory and include directory have been checked in /tools/settings/directories goto the /tools/settings/render dialog and select "debug external render". Press the render button on this dialog, and you should get a dialog showing the command line used to execute the renderer. Check the command line for any inconsistencies. Breeze Designer rel 5 does not quote directories or file names with spaces correctly in all cases. Make sure all directories or file names with spaces are quoted. If not try moving the file or changing the directory to one that does not contain spaces. If you are using POV-Ray 3.0 try using the short file name alias for the include path. POV-Ray appears to have a problem parsing some long path name variations on the command line. Breeze Designer rel 4 does not emit the directory include statement. This was fixed in rel 2.0.5.

Q. Animation batch files

The sequence template is used when creating a sequence file for an animation. The sequence files may be used as a batch file to perform special manipulation, such as combining a set of scene files specific to an animated scene. The following variables can be used within sequence templates:

  • $N Current file or project name
  • $E Current file extension
  • $F The current animation frame number
  • $R The selected external renderer
  • $I The selected render include path
  • $W Selected render with
  • $H Selected render height
When writing sequences, the sequence list may be written in temporal distribution order. This order will allows animation to be checked using the least number of frames. The most statistically significant scenes will be written first in this sequence. The name and description is probably misleading. The "runbat.seq" sample file can be used to create a simple batch file with the contents, "call pov $N$F %1 %2 %3 %4" per frame. This assumes a batch file called pov. Alternately the "runpov.seq" can be used to generate the a complete pov command per frame.

Q: How do I use the extrude function

The extrude function works with a set of points or lines. Lines may be poly-lines, such as those found in a DXF file. The extrude function expects a single closed ploygon in either case. To use the extrude function first import a 2D DXF file or create a point object. Use the settings/view/Extrude solid shapes option to enable or disable the creation of face polygons in the extruded object. If the "extrude solid shapes" is disabled only ploygons that describe the object edge will be generated. When extruding a "solid" object from a set of points the more points produce better results.

Q: Creating a point object

To create a point object, select the point tool. Use mouse "Ctrl+Left Click" to place new points. The mouse "Left Click" selects existing points to be moved or deleted. When the point set is complete, reselect the selection tool. If a point set is already selected when the point tool is selected the object will be put into edit mode. See the on-line help for other point editing options.

Q: How to create bouncing objects

First create an animation project by going into the animation menu setting the total framescount (try 30), the project name (try Test) and select new. If not present the animation palette should now pop-up. Create a parabolic set of points, go to the object builder select "parabola". Use the elastic value to control the number of bounces. An angle of 80 degrees and an elastic of .5 is interesting. Now select the point set and an object to be animated, and add these to the animation (Select your object then add on the animation palette, then select the object and points and press add). This will impose the point set, as a motion path, onto the object. This technique can be used to create other commplex object motions.

Q: Missing files at installation

Depending on the preview renderer options selected, the texture preview or texture map images may be installed. If the setup program reports missing files make sure BD20#TEX.ZIP and/or BD20#MAP.ZIP have been un-zipped into the same directory as the files from the main program zip file BD20#exe.zip. Files from the samples.z and macros.z archives have been added into the main archive files.

Q: Running macros

Breeze Designer 2.0.7 and later now use the Microsoft ActiveScript engine to run macros. This means macros may be written in Visual BASIC, JavaScript, PerlScript or PythonScript depending on the interpreters loaded. A number of samples, written in Visual BASIC, are provided to demonstrate some of the language extensions. These may be found in the macros sub-directory. To set the language type add $ on the first line followed by the name of the language ie $VisualBasic selected the Visual BASIC interpreter. Updates of the ActiveScript engine may be found at:

http://www.microsoft.com/scripting

The Breeze Designer macro support requires that an ActiveScript supporting application like Microsoft Internet Explorer, Microsoft Office 97, Microsoft Visual C++ 5.0, or the above scripting pack has been installed prior to running Breeze Designer scripts.

Q: Rebuilding the texture database

To rebuild the texture database goto to the setting dialog ans select Rebuild texture samples, now goto the texture dialog and select rebuild to rebuild all the database or reset colors to reset rhe preview colors. This will compact the database and attempt to fix any corruption.

Q: Setting the background color and render includes

To set the background color used to render and or set additional includes for a scene; de-select ALL objects ie select the background and right-click on the mouse. This will bring up a dialog to set the general scene parameters. These settings are scene specific.

Q: Unable to load Breeze Designer due to a Typelib error

Make sure you are using the latest MFC runtime DLL's. The installation program will not replace older versions if these are in use during setup. The latest versions may be found at http://www.imagos.fl.net.au This problem also occurs with releases 2.0.7a running under Window 95. Release 2.0.7b still may report the error under some conditions, although it is no longer fatal. An update will be posted as soon as this problem is resolved.

Q: Unable to create a plugin instance

This happens when the plugin and current version of Breeze Designer are mismatched. Some of the newer plugin's will not load under older versions of Breeze Designer. Make sure you are running the latest version of Breeze Designer.

Q: Breeze Designer does not load AutoCad version 13 or 14 DXF files

AutoCad changed the DXF format with version 13 to include proprietory information which Breeze Designer can not interpret. Breeze Designer will attempt to read known elements from the DXF file. Non-polygon entities imported by Breeze Designer will not be written out for rendering.

Q: Is Breeze Designer being ported to platform X

There have been a few suggestions for porting Breeze Designer. I appreciate this mail as it provides an indictation of the interest level. The following is a list of platforms requested and the current status;

  • BeOS - Initial stages. Full multi-threaded version planned.
  • Linux - Core ported, working on UI.
  • OS/2 - Suspended.
  • MacOS - Insufficient resources currently.
There are no release dates set for any of the above projects.

Q: Does Breeze Designer support VRML 2.0

VRML 2.0 support is currently being added. No release time has yet been set. Currently it is suggested to use a file converter such as http://vs.spiw.com/vs/vrml1to2E.html to convert the VRML 1.1 format output by Breeze Designer to 2.0 format.

Q: Does Breeze Designer support Alice

A plugin to read and write Alice models is currently under development and will be posted as soon as it is available. Keep checking the site for the latest information.

Q: How can I help with Breeze Designer development

Constructive feedback is always appreciated. Unfortunately not all email can be answered to to time constraints. Breeze Designer has a flexible plugin interface that allows for many features to be added to the main program. Adding to Breeze Designer in this way is the most effecient way to add to the program. I will try and post as many source code level samples for writting plugins as possible, and new ideas are welcome.

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