By Hannes Ricklefs d1132332 NCCA 2005
This readme file gives the necessary information about the installation and usage of the plug-in as well as the content of this CD.
In order to install the plug-in simply copy it into a directory that your MAYA_PLUG_IN_PATH points to. Precompiled plug-ins are available for Maya 6.0.1 on Mac OS X and Linux Red Hat.
In addition you could save it in a location convenient for you and use the dialog Window -> Settings/Preferences -> Plug-in Manager... And from the appearing Dialog select Browse and select the plug-in wherever you saved it.
In addition you need to copy this mel script into a location that your MAYA_SCRIPT_PATH points to.
On Mac OS X this should be $HOME/Documents/maya/scripts
On Linux this should be $HOME/maya/scripts
Now your system is ready to use the ImplicitFunction plug-in. See the usage section on how to operate.
I have provided a small video going through all the attribute of this plug-in. Unfortunately, I did not have a commercial version of the screen capture software so you have to excuse the watermark!
After installing the plug-in the main thing you have to do is to execute the following command in the script editor:
This will add two commands createMetaball and addMetaball.
The createMetaball command creates a new SoftVolumeSphere(locator node) and a SurfaceGenerator node. If you then want to add a metaball that interacts with the first simply execute addMetaball in the script editor. This will add a SoftVolumeSphere to the existing SurfaceGenerator node. Just make sure you have the metaball selected you want to add the new metaball to otherwise you will get an error saying: "Error: select an existing metaball".
The resulting Hypergraph
The SoftVolumeSphere is the visual representation of the implicit function. The artisit is able do all the standard transformations through the SoftVolumeSphere transform node. The SoftVolumeSphere node enables the artist to enter values for the Radius and Weight of this "Metaball".
The SurfaceGenerator is responsible for extracting the iso surface. Therefore it represents attributes that can change the appearance of the iso surface. These attributes are Tessellation, Isolevel, and the Algorithm.
There are still some issues with the plug-in: