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ECOTECT Tutorial: Visualisation Settings Panel

Synopsis

This tutorial looks at the various options available in the Visualisation Settings panel for controlling the appearance of an ECOTECT model when viewed using the Visualise tab.

Duration

You will need about 15 minutes to complete this tutorial.

Training and Accreditation

Successfully completing this tutorial fulfills one of the practical skills required for completing Level 1 of the Geometric Modelling training module.

Resources Required

To complete this tutorial, open the House_Insolation.eco file located in the Examples folder of your Ecotect installation.

Tutorial

Basic Settings
  1. Click on the Visualise display tab, followed by the Visualisation Settings panel tab. This displays all of the controls that can be used to adjust the Visualise display settings.
    Activate the Visualise display tab and then click on the Visualisation Settings panel.
    Activate the Visualise display tab and then click on the Visualisation Settings panel.
  2. The Basic Settings section of the panel allows you to adjust the foreground and background colour, as well as use pre-defined display styles. Click on the Foreground or Background buttons to change the display colour, or the Default OpenGL Sets button to choose from one of a number of default display styles.
    Use the Basic Settings to change the foreground or background colour, or to select one of the default OpenGL styles.
    Use the Basic Settings to change the foreground or background colour, or to select one of the default OpenGL styles.
    Visualise display configured with dark background and the pencil sketch display style.
    Visualise display configured with dark background and the pencil sketch display style.
Surface Display
  1. The Surface Display section can be used to determine how surfaces in the model are displayed. Select/Deselect the Display Surfaces checkbox to turn on/off the surface display, and then select from one of the four options to set how the surface is displayed.
  2. The Disable Depth Buffer and Front-Face Culling checkboxes provide advanced surface display options.
    Surfaces turned on, displayed by zone colour.
    Surfaces turned on, displayed by zone colour.
Outline Display
  1. The Outline Display section can be used to control how edges are displayed in the model. Select/Deselect the Display Outlines checkbox to turn on/off the outline display, and then select from one of the four options to set how the edges is displayed.
  2. The Scale Lines to View and Anti-Alias Lines checkboxes provide advanced edge display options.
  3. Use the Outline Width field to set the thickness of the edge lines.
    Edges turned on, displayed using foreground colour with an outline thickness of 2.0.
    Edges turned on, displayed using foreground colour with an outline thickness of 2.0.
Sketchiness

The Sketchiness section can be used to simulate the appearance of sketchy, hand-drawn lines in the model.

  1. Select the Sketchy Lines checkbox to display the model with sketchy lines.
  2. The Jitter and Line Multiplier fields can be used to manipulate the sketchiness of the lines. Click the Re-Seed Jitter Function to reset the line sketchiness.
    Sketchy Lines turned on, with Jitter set to 200 and Line Multiplier set to 6.
    Sketchy Lines turned on, with Jitter set to 200 and Line Multiplier set to 6.
  3. Segment Lines and Extend End Lines provide additional sketchiness controls.
Transparency
  1. The Make Transparent checkbox allows surfaces in the model to be displayed with transparency. Use the slider to adjust the level of transparency applied.
    Transparent surfaces turned on.
    Transparent surfaces turned on.
Fog Display
  1. Select the Apply Backgnd Fog checkbox to turn on Fog Display; this simulates the appearance of depth in the image by greying out the background of the model view. Use the slider to adjust the amount of fog displayed.
    Fog display turned on.
    Fog display turned on.
Section Plane
  1. Select the Cut Away Section checkbox to display a sectional view of the model. Use the Slider to adjust the position of the section plane, and click the Choose Sectional Axis button to specify the axis alignment of the section plane.
    Section Plane display set to the positive z axis.
    Section Plane display set to the positive z axis.
Shading Effects

The Shading Effects section controls the display of shadows and shaded surfaces in the Visualise view tab, and is used in conjunction with controls the Shadow Settings panel.

Shading Effects are used to control the display of shadows and shading in the model.
Shading Effects are used to control the display of shadows and shading in the model.

  1. The Project onto Windows checkbox projects shadows onto transparent objects onto the model.
  2. The Windows Cast Shadows checkbox allows transparent objects to cast shadows in the model.
  3. The Apply Shadow Settings checkbox uses the settings from the Shadow Settings panel to display shadows. Otherwise, shadows and shading are determined by the OpenGL hardware display drivers.
  4. Use the Shadow Contract slider to adjust the contrast level in the image.
  5. Click the Shade Surfaces button to toggle the display of surface solar shading in the model.
  6. The Shade Object Outlines checkbox toggles the casting of shadows from lines and edges, as well as surfaces in the model.
Camera Views

  1. The Camera Views section allows you to manually adjust camera settings. The Pnt Size spin box can be used to adjust the display of POINT objects in relation to incremental adjustments of the camera view. Increase this value for large, urban-scale models, and decrease this value for small models and interior views.
  2. The Near Clip and Far Clip spin boxes can be used to adjust the minimum and maximum clipping planes, which determines the visibility of objects in relation to the camera position.
  3. For more detailed information on all of the settings available under the Camera Views section, please refer to the ECOTECT Help file.
Interactivity

  1. The Full Interactive Redraw checkbox forces ECOTECT to redraw the model when adjusting the model view (eg. zooming, panning, orbiting), rather than reverting to a wireframe display.
  2. The Auto-Optimise Depth checkbox, if selected, automatically calculates the near and far clipping planes, to ensure that the perspective view of the model is correct.
  3. Click the Straighten Current View button to align the view of the model so that all vertical edges are parallel.
    Original View.

    Original View.

    Straightened View.

    Straightened View.

  4. For more detailed information on all of the settings available under the Interactivity section, please refer to the ECOTECT Help file.
Display Default

  1. To save the current display settings as the default values to use, click the Save Default Settings button. A dialogue box prompt will appear confirming that you wish to proceed.
  2. If the Visualise display window becomes corrupted, or the various visualisation settings controls do not respond, click the Reset OpenGL Display to re-initialise the display settings.
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