View Full Version : Simple Workflow Hotkey Enhancement

01-10-2004, 11:30 PM
In Modeler, allow us to configure hotkeys determined by the tabs at the top.

For example, when the "Construct" tab is highlighted, pressing "t" will create a box.

But, when "Modify" is highlighted, pressing "t" will activate the move tool.

01-11-2004, 03:40 AM
Tell me you're kidding.
You *are* kidding right?

Having a different set of hotkeys for each tab is going to enhance workflow in what way?

What happens if you decide to change the layout of your menu system, and half a dozen commands all with the same keystroke appear on the same tab. As for the 't' key, that is already probably the most used keystroke in modeler. If you changed that, he LW world would probably fall apart.

No really. You *are* doing a wind up aren't you?

01-11-2004, 03:45 AM
This could generate some sort of confusion IMO. to me its better enable the user to use also other key combination like Alt, ctrl with press or release as in other apps this will generate a lot of usable shortcuts.

a cool shortcut would be instead a simple key to change tab by tab. for example pressing R and change tab by tab just like you do with selection types (points, polys etc ) pressing spacebar. :) so you haven't to use the mouse for that!

however, since shoruts are tool related you don't need to change tab if you know a lot of them :)

01-11-2004, 06:19 AM
Well, that idea had crossed my mind a few times already. There are still too many functions I can't assign a hotkey to because I've run out of possible keys. Just think of the many tools buried under the "Additional" button. In contrast to you, Mk. III, I don't think it would necessarily be confusing. Maya can do just that, even though it requires a few lines of MEL code for the command scripts. I don't see why it couldn't be done in LW. Just assign a hotkey to the tabs and then LW would know in which context to look for hotkeys. This wouldn't even require major re-coding, since all you needed to do is store some extra variables. Of course you should also maintain the ability to have "global" hotkeys.


01-11-2004, 07:28 AM
Maya is a completely different app, and is set up in a completely different way. You work in various modes, each with their own set of menus.

Modeler does not work this way, and is highly unlikely to unless Newtek decide to integrate layout & modeler into one app some time in the future.

Modeler keystrokes & menus are not distinct enough. Create, modify, Construct, Detail are all basic modelling tools. The only set of menus that don't really fit into that are the Map & Display tabs.

Consider this. You make a sphere. Now you want to drag some points about. Do you now press '^t', or do you need to go to the modify tab to use the 'Drag points' tool? Pressing '^t' is pretty easy.

Now you want to bevel. You press 'b' You don't need to go to the Multiply tab do you?

Now you want to drag more points. Do you go back to the Modify tab? No. You press '^t' again.

If each tab had its own set of keystrokes, and remember - there really aren't enough to ensure that all the main commands would be identical for each set of tabs IMO, you would probably need to have, drag points, move, rotate, scale, bevel & so on on EACH tab to ensure the keystrokes stay the same, unless you wanted to select a tab (or remember a different keystroke for each one).

As it stands, if you desperately want to have differing sets of keystrokes for different types of modelling, and you prefer to live in a constant state of confusion, you could just create a new menu system, redefine all the keys & save your config. Do one for each combo you want & load them as needed.

01-11-2004, 10:16 AM
I don't think people are considering how useful this could be.

Let's take an example of "Split Polygon". This is, by default, bound to CTRL + L. When I use this, I press ctrl with my left pinky and L with my right index. This requires me to take my right hand off the mouse.

I can rebind this key already, but IMO the most accessible keys are qwert, asdfg, zxcvb. For the fastest and smoothest keyboard-oriented modeling, it helps to have MOST of the tools bound to these since they are very easy to reach.

Yes, CTRL ALT and SHIFT help. But I'd rather press one button than two (call me lazy if you want).

Also one thing that would further decrease hand movement is to allow us to change the confirm key. Instead of enter, let us make it "spacebar" so we don't have to move our hands around the keyboard as much. (ie, knife tool doesn't work until you "confirm" with enter)

This would be pretty painless to implement, and as long as it's optional I don't see why anyone would be against this. You could even set a hotkey as "global" or "tab dependent".

Also, try this. Alt+F2 to hide the toolbar. See the extra space at the top? The tabs go away for no reason. If my idea is implemented, you would essentially NEVER need the toolbar once you got used to your hotkey setup. As it is right now, I find myself running out of hotkeys. And the toolbar takes up space it doesn't have to.

01-11-2004, 01:01 PM
Nope, MK. III, Maya isn't that different, it's just more aware of things and much smarter. This does in no way depend on how you switch around between the different parts - you can even get rid of that separation if you so desire (it requires some major changes to a lot of the default MEL scripts, however) or go to the othzer extreme and have a Maya "Modeler" and a Maya "Layout" (each with a differnt toolset defined by MEL files). After all, the entire interface is just an interpretation of MEL files. There is a million ways to change the default behaviors which effectively allows to use the same set of keys for a million different functions/ tools. Mabe the rigidness of LW's interface does not allow that much functionality, but at least a tiny bit of such things could still be implemented. I would be happy if I just had 10 more keys for some of the tools I use a lot. Maybe at least something like the windows ALT-key/ menu functionality could be implemented. I could open the menus and then just hit the highlited letter on the keyboard. This at least would save one unnecessary keystroke.


01-11-2004, 03:53 PM
Originally posted by Nemoid
a cool shortcut would be instead a simple key to change tab by tab. for example pressing R and change tab by tab just like you do with selection types (points, polys etc ) pressing spacebar. :) so you haven't to use the mouse for that!

I've been asking for that for months now..changing tabs with keystrokes will improve the workflow.

I have even made a working mockup that does just that :p


01-12-2004, 02:44 AM
what would be useful is if LW jumped to the tab that contained the command you pressed the hotkey for.

01-12-2004, 03:55 AM
The less you have to use the mouse, the best workflow you have. changing tab by tab with a simple key could aid to find unused commands or buttons easier, with less mouse clicks.
this is valid both for modeler and Layout.

I like also your adding, Matt : seems very nice and easy to implement workflow enhancement. :)

01-12-2004, 06:10 PM
Originally posted by Matt
what would be useful is if LW jumped to the tab that contained the command you pressed the hotkey for.

I don't think there's enough key combinations to go around.

You'd have to press a hotkey for a command you don't need to get to the tab you want and then cancel...to press the right one...or something like that.