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[H16] Node naming, coloring and layout guidelines

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Are there any useful guidelines or 'best practices' available for organizing, coloring, naming and grouping your nodes? With H16 especially there are so many ways to organize your nodes now, it would be nice if some sort of standard was developed for use in team environments.

Attached is a simple layout based on a Neils Prayer tutorial making use of caps, nested  and colored network boxes, etc.


Feel free to share your tips and suggestions, screen grabs etc!



Edited by art3mis

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Hello, I am also trying to optimize my workflow. I am still newbie, so maybe I am in a detour or deadend but I hope some of my tips will anyways help the others. Other tips and tricks are highly welcome.

I am not using OUT_ but I use this naming:


Why QQ prefix?
- because I use the filter in the operator list (see the attachment)
- classic OUT or even OUT_ filter gives you many nonrelevant results, and the list is cluttered then
- capital QQ to have them on the top of the operator list, even without filtering
- QQ string (as far as I tested) isn't used in any SOP or DOP (for example "XX" collides with maxx in "attrib randomize", "grain source" and many other ... and I dont want irrelevant SOPs to clutter result in my searches)
- Q is close to fingers, I did not find any better solution
- I have attached a file with all SOPs and DOPs, you can test other filters (hundreds of them, maybe not all, as I have dragged them manually from Tool Palette)


Other QQ prefixes:
QQANI_ - animated nodes, which have keyframes or other time dependent expressions
QQPRE_ - my "preview quality" nodes, or "low quality" nodes (for example Resample SOP, voxel size settings etc) which help me to temporarily speed up the work and I should not forget to turn them back high in final render
QQOUT_ - classic OUT nulls, dedicated to be referenced from somewhere
QQREN_ - nodes which I want to render (finals or some client previews of partial animatic setups etc)
QQMEM_ - file caches, or caches
QQLIT_ - lights
QQCAM_ - cameras (btw I have shortcuts for Next Camera and Cam Restore ... you may have two cameras, final/work and you can quickly swap detail/final with one hotkey)
QQMAT_ - assign materials


Now, use in Network view pane / Operator tree (Shift-W)
- lets you filter those QQ
- drag drop references easily into inputs
- lets you drag drop materials too
- you may also quickly filter QQANI and finetune animations, QQMEM and resim files etc

Parameters pane
- I have it in the middle of the desktop, because I have wacom tablet and Parameters on the right side of the monitor didnt let me use the input ladders correctly
- I know this is sometimes inconvenient, but I did not figure better solution

Other tips
- you can rename nodes with hotkey in H16
- simple Python scripts can help you automate this (hotkey to create already prenamed, wired NULL with the right colour)
- I dont have such scripts yet, but once I have, I will share
- also I would like script to add QQANI animated channels into Animation Editor channel groups, which is not that difficult I guess (there is hotkey to add channel group from selected node)



sops dops.hiplc

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I remember a thread here about a script to auto colour nodes but I can't find it ? do someone remember it ?

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Might have been "OnCreated.py" from 2010: 


Attached you'll find my edit of Graham's sophisticated python script which handles all the coloring. To install it place in $HOME/houdiniX.Y/scripts/, you might need to create the scripts directory ( I seriously don't understand why it isn't created during installation, but that just me ;-) ).

I hope you like it, and let us know what you think.


Nick van Zutphen


Edited by Cyzor

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