Monday, May 16, 2011

Teaching an old dog

Mister Acacia is online

I've been in SL for just over a year. I'm not the oldest person (RL age) nor the longest living avatar. But I do get settled in my ways sometimes. So doing things the way I first figured out tend to become habits.

One such habit that I broke is the painstaking labor of aligning prims. I talked about that in an earlier blog and it has saved me hours and hours of tedious work.

Enter lesson two, aligning textures. If you build something and all the prims are the same size, oriented in the same direction and offset only by a multiple of its size, then laying textures that have a whole number of repeats per face is a piece of cake. But most of the time you will use different sized prims to create something other than a cube, it will have corners and angles, maybe passageways or doors or windows. Aligning textures then becomes another painstaking and tedious process of calculating repeats or offsets. Ugh.

I found a script, OpenAlign, that makes the process less painful. Drop it into each prim that you want to align textures, link those prims, drop your texture into the root prim, line it up like you want, select that face and do /1align. Easy Peasy. But if you're like me, you already linked those prims to the larger structure. So it means unlinking them from the structure, linking them together, lining up the texture, then linking them back to the structure.

You can also do this in Phoenix. No linking is required, no scripts. It uses planar texture mapping, which essentially takes your repeats per meter function and moves it to the repeats per face area. Planar is not default, so you have to change it for each prim face to be aligned.

// Digression
Why is align spelled with a g? Why is line not spelled with a g?

With both of these solutions, I found they only do parallel faces, so you can do opposite walls, but turning a corner doesn't work. There may be other scripts that can turn corners and possibly even line up arcs and other "rounded" surfaces, but expect them to cost a bit.

And with OpenAlign, maybe it was my misreading of the directions but it was lining up all sides of the prim, not just the one i wanted. Phoenix didn't, but that's because I selected the faces to be aligned.

Bottom line, this old dog learned how to line up his textures, and now the walls in his house look beautimous. Not a seam to be found (in the texture, anyway; I still have tortured prims that need that painstaking manual alignment ... ugh).

Does Viewer2 do texture alignment? Imprudence? Kirsten's? I don't know and to be honest I would like to know. Comment with your views.

Mister Acacia is offline

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