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Thread: It wants to be 2.5 when it grows up

  1. #1
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    Default It wants to be 2.5 when it grows up

    In the interest of getting 2.5 moving along, I'm going to start this thread for any who are interested in what it has to offer. This is rough, folks, and I mean ROUGH. Let's call it an alpha, maybe even pre-alpha, because the functionality design and requirements are sure to change as people use it. I'll just update this thread as I update the zip file. I know this has taken a long time, but I swear that the days are getting shorter the older I get. Or maybe I just can't hack the late nights like I used to. If I don't have my teddy bear in-hand by 10:00, I'm useless these days.

    Here is an overview of the changes for 2.5 (both enhancements and bug fixes, which includes some changes and fixes put into 2.1 so they may sound familiar):

    * A scheduled scripted sequence will now terminate, whether or not the script actually ends.
    * New "Input" plugin type. Allows for recording to a sequence from hardware and live updating of controllers.
    [More on this below]
    * Data has been separated from the program code to better accommodate Vista and installation scripts.
    (Application data has been moved to a directory under the user's "My Documents" directory.)
    * The script editor no longer tries to save a new project to a file named "Sequences".
    * If a sequence refers to a plugin that no longer exists and the application removes the sequence data, the remaining plugin data is no longer corrupted.
    * Per-channel dimming curves!
    [More on this below]
    * Bug 53: New preference and scroll behavior (for shift+scroll).
    * Added arithmetic paste functions to the editing grid context menu.
    * Wizard sequence save now runs through the same execution path as non-wizard sequences, so invalid file name exceptions are now handled appropriately.
    * Bug 57: Added display of the length of selected time span to the standard editor so that you no longer have to do the math.
    * Added toolbar button to the standard editor to toggle display of cell intensity values within the cells themselves.
    * Bug 52: Changed the checked listbox in the channel test dialog to a regular listbox to allow for multiple selections.
    * If you change the channel count for a sequence and you have plugins that exceed that count, the application will now adjust the plugin channel range instead of giving you an error message. Also, if you adjust the channel count upward, any plugins whose upper range matched the channel count will also be automatically adjusted to continue to match.

    Input plugin type
    I know this was explained previously, so I'll keep this one light. It has changed due to some user input in that it now allows for multiple mapping sets. This mostly has meaning in an animatronic environment. For an example: You have a joystick with four buttons that control four devices. With multiple mapping sets, those four buttons can control many more devices by changing which mapping set you're using at the time (and there are a couple of ways to change sets while you're recording. I can explain it to whomever is curious, if anyone is.). It's noticeably more complicated than its earlier incarnation, but potentially really useful. Anyway, this change means it has become largely untested again outside of my usage of a joystick with a PSC and a single servo. There are joystick and keyboard plugins written and work for me and my light use. There's also a Wii guitar one written by Lucas Boucher, but I believe it needs a bit of updating to accommodate the latest changes.

    Dimming curves
    If you end up liking this, thank Phil Short, though some outside input has caused it grow as well. In it's simplest form, it lets you redefine output levels for given channel values. This allows you to create a more linear output for a type of light string. Thanks to one certain person (and you know who you are...creating all that extra work for me by having a good idea...the nerve of some people), it has grown to include the use of libraries. There are two curve libraries: a local one and a remote one. The local one you add to by creating entries yourself or by importing entries from the remote library. The remote library will be a collection that's created by the community -- if you have a useful curve, you upload it to this library from your local library. Generally, you specify the light string manufacturer, the light count, and the controller it's being used with. Then when you or someone has that configuration for a channel, you import the curve and you get linear output for your lights on that channel.
    This is going to change a lot, I can already tell you that. The remote library may or may not survive, but it could be cool if it works well. The interface for creating a curve is utilitarian at best and light on functionality. Again, I'm expecting this to change as it gets some REAL use.

    2.1
    2.1 data won't work with this (surprise, shock, awe). There's a conversion, so if you want to try to use any of your existing data, you would:
    1. Backup your 2.1 directory. While the conversion program backs up anything it modifies, I'd hate to see someone lose data.
    2. Copy prepare.exe to your 2.1 Vixen directory.
    3. Run it
    4. Delete it. If you don't delete it, it will run the next time 2.1 runs which will just result in it creating a bunch of backups of the files it's already moved and converted, so no biggie. I've tried to keep it safe for such moments.

    That should result in it creating the data branch for 2.5 under My Documents/Vixen and moving your sequences over. However, it will not copy over your other data -- profiles, audio, etc. Its sole responsibility is to get your sequences over safe and sound.

    Aren't running 2.1? Then don't do this, it won't work. You'll need to go up through the migration path of 2.0 -> 2.1 -> 2.5.

    And in conclusion...

    As always, I thank everyone for their patience, their input, and their continued indulgence in letting me pursue this hobby and this love of mine. You guys have a lot of choices out there these days, so anyone who chooses to use this is bestowing an honor upon me and I thank you for that.

    Vixen 2.5 zip file

    Edit: The latest zip file as of 10/11/09 Vixen 2.5.0.0.zip file
    Edit: The latest zip file as of 10/28/09 Vixen 2.5.0.6.zip file
    Edit: The latest zip file as of 11/09/09 Vixen 2.5.0.7.zip file
    Edit: The latest zip file as of 11/22/09 Vixen 2.5.0.8.zip file

  2. #2
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    Default Re: It wants to be 2.5 when it grows up

    KC,
    1st let me express my THANKS to you for all you do for us.

    The prepare.exe file linked in the above post, it is the same as the previous prepare.exe or is it specifically designed for 2.1 to 2.5 conversions? If it is the latter there may be some confusion bue to the same file name. Unless it is specifically addressed.
    Thanks,
    Brian, your friendly site Admin.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: It wants to be 2.5 when it grows up

    I want to know, is there a cape under that jacket?
    :-)
    Lou

  4. #4
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    Default Re: It wants to be 2.5 when it grows up

    KC, thanks!!!!!!!! The dimming curves is an awesome addition!!
    James Family Christmas - 1600 channels of SS Renard channels
    Website - http://jamesfamilychristmas.com/ <<broken
    Facebook - James Family Christmas


  5. #5
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    Default Re: It wants to be 2.5 when it grows up

    Quote Originally Posted by Macrosill View Post
    KC,
    1st let me express my THANKS to you for all you do for us.

    The prepare.exe file linked in the above post, it is the same as the previous prepare.exe or is it specifically designed for 2.1 to 2.5 conversions? If it is the latter there may be some confusion bue to the same file name. Unless it is specifically addressed.
    It is specific for 2.1 -> 2.5. You can name it whatever you like if you are going to run it manually. If you want to let the app run it and delete it, it's going to look for that specific file name. So it's all in how you want to do it.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: It wants to be 2.5 when it grows up

    I LOVE THE DIMMING CURVE IMPLEMENTATION! Along with the rest of the program =) KC you truly are an amazing person for doing all of this work. I really appreciate all that you've done, and because of your work, and the work of many others, people here can spread the Christmas Joy to others. One minor question... is my computer to blame for this error message I get when trying to Export/Import a Channel's Dimming Curve? (Vista x64)

    If I get the dimming curve export together, I can get to work on a Renard Library for The wal-mart sold "Holiday Time" LED's, Lowes brand Incandescents, and a bunch of random spotlights and such.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by chilloutdocdoc; 07-04-2009 at 02:07 PM.
    Check out what the [URL="http://www.extremelightingproducts.com/shop"]Extreme Lighting Products Shop[/URL] is selling!

  7. #7
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    Default Re: It wants to be 2.5 when it grows up

    Jet on Vista 64! I keep forgetting about the 64-bit world. I will research this, thank you.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: It wants to be 2.5 when it grows up

    Does this attachment change anything for you? (unzip into the Vixen 2.5 directory, different program executable)
    Attached Files Attached Files

  9. #9
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    Default Re: It wants to be 2.5 when it grows up

    Whoa fast response!

    Got a new one for ya KC... this occurs on program launch, I'm in the process of digging out my show computer (xp pro x32) to test it on there and see if it's vista specific, if there's anything i can do to help let me know.



    Edit: the second thumbnail shows the error resulted from running on XP PRO 32 Bit, same error, both EXE's.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by chilloutdocdoc; 07-04-2009 at 04:07 PM. Reason: adding results of testing from second computer
    Check out what the [URL="http://www.extremelightingproducts.com/shop"]Extreme Lighting Products Shop[/URL] is selling!

  10. #10
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    Default Re: It wants to be 2.5 when it grows up

    For a quick response,... probably should use the bug report website thats been set up for Vixen.
    [url]http://www.vixenlights.com/download/vixen_2(2)/banners/vixensig256.gif[/url]
    [url=http://sawmillchristmas.com]sawmillchristmas.com[/url]

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