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Possible Issue with crowds

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I've been testing v19 and have been working with crowds (trees to make a forest). I've noticed that if a chor has crowd it works fine until you save the chor, close am, restart, then open the chor. The model associated with the chor does not come back with the chor. The chor workspace shows an empty place holder for the model:

 

empty.PNG

 

If you click on that empty place holder in the workspace AM crashes. Also, if you embed all in the project, save the project and reopen it seems to work fine. If I import the missing model, then drag it back onto the crowd it works ok until the next time I open the chor.

 

Here is the chor

sack2_chor.cho

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I didn't know we had crowds. Is that like a flock?

 

When I open your chor, I get results like you said in both v19 and v18.

 

I think this should be two bug reports. The missing model and the crash.

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I didn't know we had crowds. Is that like a flock?

 

 

 

I will consider this the highlight of my year. I knew something Robert didn't!

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I will consider this the highlight of my year. I knew something Robert didn't!

 

You managed to sneak that in just in time to fit into 2016. :)

 

For completeness sake, the three types of flocking are: Birds, Crowd and Swarm.

According to the Tech Ref their attributes are:

 

Birds

The “Birds” plug-in, as the name implies, is designed for flocks of birds. Each bird tries to stay close to its neighbors, and uses the motion of the entire flock to decide how it flies.

 

Minimum Distance: This is the distance that each bird will try to maintain with its neighbors. If the bird is closer than this value from it’s nearest neighbor, it will steer away from that neighbor. This distance is measured from the pivot of one bird to the pivot of the next, so you should allow for the size of the model. . (You will want to set this value after you scale the model used in the flock).

 

Jitter: This is a randomizing value used to make the flock more chaotic. The higher this value, the more the members of the flock will adjust their steering. You might try a higher value for bats. Maximum Speed: This is the maximum speed of each member of the flock. You will probably want to use a lower value for geese, and a higher value for swallows.

 

Acceleration: This value affects the amount of course correction a bird can make per frame. Slower birds, like geese, should have a lower value than bats or swallows.

 

Type Sets the influence shape of the Flock to one of the following: Sphere, Cone, Cylinder, or Box.

 

Crowds

Crowd is a special kind of flock intended for groups of characters or plants that are on a surface like the ground. The members are distributed in the flock region in a flat plane. When a Flock Surface Constraint is applied to the flock, the members of the flock can all be placed on an uneven surface. Unlike the birds and swarm flocks, the members of the flock will not move within the flock. But you can still apply an action to the members.

 

Swarm

The “Swarm” plug-in is designed for the kind of motion observed for flies and bees. The members of a swarm have no formation or cohesion, but rather fly around a centralized region.

 

Minimum Distance: This value will determine the density of the swarm. This will also affect the behavior of the individual members, since the density will determine how much and how often they have to modify their paths. A fly swarm will probably be less dense than a bee swarm.

 

Jitter: This is a randomizing value used to make the flock more chaotic. The higher this value, the more the members of the flock will adjust their direction. Maximum Speed: This is the maximum speed of each member of the swarm. (Think of it as a speed limit). You will probably want to use a lower value for flies, and a higher value for bees and gnats.

 

Acceleration: Use this value to affect the steering ability of the swarm members. The higher the value, the tighter the members can turn and readjust their paths.

 

Flocking.png

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I tried a simple flock and could not get anything to show but this was in 18

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This was done in 19 seems to work fine did crowd and swarm saved and reloaded and rendered so 19 alpha works 18 does not

 

 

 

flocking.prj

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

flocking_mpeg4.mp4

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Did you activate hair? I think that was necessary, right?

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Will try later with hair activated missed that part in the v19 trial but v18 did not work at all

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Tried this with hair on two models one for crowd and one for swarm hair dod not show on either one but did on model with hair used in crowd when placed separately into chor

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Paul,

I think you already said much of the following... I'm just now catching up.

 

I'm curious about your original Chor in that you state that you are using crowds to generate trees.

The issue that I see is that there is no model associated with that when the project is opened and this might be the primary issue at hand... the chor/project is corrupted because there is no model to be found associated with the crowd. (I understand that you are sharing the file/Chor that didn't have the model saved... but the original crowd/model setup is perhaps more useful for comparison/troubleshooting)

 

When the model is replaced the Project works fine (in v19... haven't tried in v18) and the trees cover the terrain (ala crowd).

 

A few troubleshooting notes...

Recovering your Chor/Project wasn't entirely straightforward because it was missing a few textures/images (not a big deal).

The main issue was that saving the corrupted Chor met with a crash.

Trying to embed everything into a Project from your Chor also met with a crash.

What got the files back to working order for me was first saving the Project file unembedded and then saving it again under new name with everything embedded.

 

At a guess I'd say that... if... you are working only with Choreographies it would be better to use Projects.

I know some folks prefer to use Choreographies only but we always risk having some data loss when the entire Project is not saved.

Note that I assume you aren't saving entire Projects because you only shared a Chor file.

That may not be the case but on my end saving the Project seems to have alleviated the problem.

Of course, saving the Chor itself should save all the data too so differences between Chor and Project (if any) could be noted in a bug report.

I haven't fully tested but it seems to me that when the entire Project is saved the model associated with the crowd is maintained but if saving only the Chor that might not always be the case.

 

I suppose the bottom line here is that with everything in it's proper place the model associated with crowd/flocking does persist and return when opening the Project again (in v19). I'll have to give v18 a try.

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Rodney, the issue is if you apply the model (in my case a tree) to the crowd in a chor, then save the chor and bring it back after closing the project, the model (tree) is no longer there. The reference to it is (but blank) and clicking on that blank reference causes AM to crash. If you do the same, but instead of just saving the chor, you embed and save the project, reopening the project works.

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