Friday Flashback #116

Marketing collateral for SOFTIMAGE|DS (from the Avid days).
I was originally hired at Softimage to be the lead writer on the DS documentation. That never happened. I sat around for months reading specs, going to meetings, and endlessly preparing doc plans, until I was drafted into doing some actual writing work on DKit. Then I moved on to the SOFTIMAGE|SDK, and I never did work on the DS docs, except for the DS|SDK.

Compiled CHM version of the Softimage 2014 SDK guide

Here’s a compiled CHM version of the XSI SDK guide.

There’s no index, but you can always use Search with Search titles only enabled. If I can find my old python scripts, maybe I’ll get around to adding one (but it will just be an index of objects, methods, and properties).

This year I tried the Maxscript 2013 Help CHM creator, but really all that got me was the TOC for the Programmer’s Guide. I still had to add the Ref Guide TOC, and fix up the scripting errors, and remove the unneeded navigation buttons. I do all that with a few global search and replaces.

Missing shaders in the preset manager

If you find that you’re missing nodes in the render tree Preset Manager, then check the Softimage install folder. In particular, check

  • $XSI_HOME\Application\phenolib\spdl
  • $XSI_HOME\Application\phenolib\spdl\mibase

In a working Softimage installation, like mine , the content of the Preset Manager is determined by spdl/mi files in those folders (and perhaps others too).

For example, if I delete mia_lens_bokeh.spdl from $XSI_HOME\Application\phenolib\spdl\mibase, then Bokeh (mia) disappears from the render tree preset manager. If I put it back, and refresh the preset manager, the shader re-appears.

Try or Activate is not for network licenses

This Try/Activate screen means that you are running in Standalone mode. Try gets you a Trial standalone license, which is good for 30 days and cannot be reset. Activate is for Standalone licenses only. If you try to activate a Network license, you’ll get an Error 123. I used to see these types of errors every release.


Here are some related links:

Friday Flashback #115

Many thanks to Ed Schiffer for these pictures.

The XSI 1.0 box set. They don’t package software like that anymore.



Copying colors from point cloud to polygonizer mesh

To get the colors from the point cloud onto the polygonizer mesh, you need to do something like this:

  1. On the polygonizer mesh, create an ICE Tree.
  2. Use Get Closest Location to get a location on the point cloud, get the color from that location.
  3. Store that color somewhere (eg in an attribute on the polygonizer mesh, or in a vertex color map).

Here I’m storing the colors in a CAV:

And here I’m sticking the colors in a per-point Color attribute: