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A A A A Author Topic: Coming up with a Standard Model: Naming Convention  (Read 2790 times)


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Coming up with a Standard Model: Naming Convention
Post #1     : January 16, 2012, 04:52:58 PM
Hey Depot, Mighty Borlaug here.  I wanted to share a strategy with you that will make your custom scenery much easier to use.  Believe it or not, it has to do with the names you give your objects!
When I went to school at the Art Institute of Portland, one thing became clear: I was going to have to deal with a lot of digital files.  To keep my data usable, all classes would start off by determining the naming convention.  This was usually as simple as:
[Object Name]-[Date]-[My Initials or School ID].[File Extension]

This meant that DowntownSC_01-11/14/05-107552.ms was my Downtown model for the first scene of my animation for ‘Intro to 3D animation’ class.  Obviously this convention won't cut the work load for us so, I will to put it in terms of why it’s important for you to name your files predictably.
Much of the custom scenery here suffers from the unique problem of too much freedom, a subject I intend to tackle later.  For now, getting a custom scenery folder with 100s of objects inside it tends to intimidate folks.  Plus, having to navigate the set for that one piece you need is a grating sort of thing to do.  Hence, I suggest using a naming convention to make this work out.
Building objects tend to be made of the same things; you have walls, floors, ceilings, etc.  Your naming convention could be as simple as adding a 'w_' before all wall objects or as easy as modifying other parameters in the file so that they can be sorted in folder to appear in a specific order.  This way, rather than having walls, floors, ceilings and other objects scattered randomly; walls are at the top of the list, followed by floors, ceilings and then everything else.
Having the user navigate a random list for a single part is problematic and does not incentivize them to keep using the building set.  Having them only scroll down to the section of your building set where your walls are and going through 10-20 iterations of walls to find the one they need is a definite improvement.  Especially since we can't change the size of the building part window to accommodate more objects visible at a time.
Again, this is a friendly suggestion for the purposes of increasing usability.  After all, the easier it is to use our custom scenery, the more people will tell others about it.  The more people talking means, more opportunities for your custom scenery to turn up in videos, screenshots and more!
A fine thank you for your time!
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Re: Coming up with a Standard Model: Naming Convention
Post #2     : January 16, 2012, 05:03:37 PM
I use a system very similar to this, but I simply did it in an order of "detail." For example, in my set Arid Outpost, a medium curved curved roof that is two heights tall with a droop is named "Roof medium curve 2h droop." I have found this system works pretty well.

I did notice you mentioned the scenery window can not be expanded, yes, this is true, but each individual object name/icon can be made smaller so more fits in the window. All you need to do is press the negative magnifying glass in the top right (I think?) of the window.
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Re: Coming up with a Standard Model: Naming Convention
Post #3     : January 16, 2012, 08:25:36 PM
^That's correct. The individual items can be made smaller, but this also makes the icon smaller, thus making the descriptions more important. As for the way I arrange my scenery is taken almost exactly from the naming conventions shyguy puts forth in his sets. I've always found those to be the sets easiest for me to use, so patterning my own sets after it I felt was a good idea.
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