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Macro launch?
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Not sure if macro is what I'm looking for, this is not my area of strength.

I run an observatory in NJ and had an idea for a hands on learning station. An encloser with 3 monitor/keyboard/trackball stations where one computer is running 3 sessions of Imagine. Of course each station displays its own session. I have made some pretty tight models of Pioneer10, Lunar prospector, etc. (my "Houston, we have a problem" image uses one such object. Actually 2 counting the planet). My thought is an object is loaded into a full screen perspective view in the detail editor. Kids can use the trackball to spin it around, do a quick render, even save it if they want.

The best way to handle this would be to have some interface, maybe a flash thing, maybe just the desktop, with a few icons - one representing each available object. When you click on the icon Imagine launches, loads the object and puts up a full screen perspective view. Does anyone know how or if this can be done?

Posted on: 2008/11/17 14:24
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Re: Macro launch?
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Hi, Babblefu,

You could use Macro's on the Amiga Version of Imagine, but because of the Arexx Port defaulting to 1, you can only have one version of Imagine running, anyway- which wouldn't help you much.

IFW on the other hand doesn't support Macro's and, as there's no development being done with it, that's unlikely to ever happen in the foreseeable future...

Have you tried/looked at the free Astronomy program Celestia?

http://www.shatters.net/celestia/
(It runs on Linux/Mac/Windows.)

You can literally, 'pick a star' and 'go there' with it. You can then orbit the star, visit any planets that orbit it, etc, etc.
It also has a scripting language, and even NASA have utilized it, for educational purposes.

Admittedly, it doesn't handle proper motion and the stars etc, are CSG Spheres, rather than Oblate Spheroids- but that minor niggle apart it's a great program. And, you can use 3D models with it- the Celestia Motherlode contains GBytes of additional textures, models (both real and fictional) and scripts showing the Solar System, Space Missions, etc, etc.

http://www.celestiamotherlode.net/

Well worth a look at, if you haven't already.

http://flickr.com/photos/28576267@N02 ... in/set-72157607880993037/

Shows a project I'm working on at the moment using Celestia- mapping a fictional planet and it's solar system.

Sorry couldn't be more help.

All the Best,

Kevin.

Posted on: 2008/11/18 2:03
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Re: Macro launch?
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I can see two ways of doing this..Use a scripting language such as AutoIt(freeware!) which has some GUI capability ..or a program doing the same thing as AutoIt but with better GUI possibilities..delphi or c++.

A custom toolbar would be easiest but how to stop kids closing it?
er..thats three ways then.

Posted on: 2008/11/18 7:35
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Re: Macro launch?
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Thanks Kevin, I'll give that a look. It began ocurring to me yesterday that with such a console there are possibilities beyond a 3D stations. Like Flash point and click presentations on planets or whatever. A program like you descibe is also a great fit for this kind of thing, excellent thought!

Posted on: 2008/11/18 11:51
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Re: Macro launch?
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The observatory has about 300 members, though a programming solution is well beyond my abilities I bet I could tap into others to provide that. I appreciate the direction.

So phrased otherwise - omitting the macro part - Imagine cannot be launched using arguements or switches, like (a totally made up example):
"imagine.exe -s" to launch directly into the stage editor.

Posted on: 2008/11/18 11:57
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Re: Macro launch?
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I started at the Obs as the webguy, a while back I resigned the site so by copying up a few images I could give the thing a whole new look. Like designing it with skins. I just copied up the Saturn skin - made in Imagine!

Well, all except the little Cassini probe, but working on that.

http://www.njaa.org

Posted on: 2008/11/18 12:06
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Re: Macro launch?
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Quote:
So phrased otherwise - omitting the macro part - Imagine cannot be launched using arguements or switches, like (a totally made up example): "imagine.exe -s" to launch directly into the stage editor.


Imagine doesn't take any command line parameters..you have to run the detail editor then send keypresses to jump to the stage editor.
Heres a snippet of an AutoIt script i wrote years ago to create seashells etc..Parameters were entered using a delphi app which then called the script which can have parameters.

; Run Imagine if not already open
If WinExists("Imagine - Detail Editor", "") = 0 Then
Run("c:\imagine\imagine.exe")
Sleep(2000)
;close splash screen
Send("{space}")
EndIf

WinActivate("Imagine - Detail Editor", "")
While WinActive("Imagine - Detail Editor") = 0
WEnd

; quick render
If $CmdLine[1] = "qr" Then
Send("!eq")
Send("{enter}")
EndIf

The program and source is in the download section.Its called Extrudo.

Posted on: 2008/11/18 20:13
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Re: Macro launch?
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Don't know if I missed something, but it sounds like you want a screen with a simple interface that enables people to pick objects and look at them different ways, with an option to render and save them. I'd say you need some kind of presentation program. Using Imagine for that would be like using GIMP for displaying pictures.

Posted on: 2008/11/21 14:27
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Like somethin' is brewin' and bout to begin.
Can't put me finger on what lies in store,
But I fear what's to happen all happened before.
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Re: Macro launch?
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I think a presentation program would be fine if it was just a matter of displaying images. But how would something not Imagine open an Imagine object, allow the user to rotate the view and make a quick render?

Posted on: 2008/11/21 20:06
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Re: Macro launch?
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If you can afford the full not the demo version of 3D Exploration from Right Hemisphere you can do everything except the render...you can also save the object out as a host of different formats including all the standards with exceptions for Imagine, Bryce[which you can't even view], Vue[same for .vob] and MAX , C4D and Maya..as they are all propritary formats.. ...

Posted on: 2008/11/22 1:02
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BobbyStahr Imagine 2.1.9+
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