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A useful, global 'Undo' button

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A useful, global 'Undo' button

Postby SeaBorneScanner » Thu May 30, 2013 10:35 am

Hello,

I'm writing this post terribly frustrated after cleaning and aligning many scans of a very intricate and complex object, and just as I was about to align the last scan and wanted to clean a small part of it,
I clicked the delete button while the group combining the other 10 scans was selected, and so I deleted it...
Now I have to go back to the original scans, clean each one and align them again, basically stating from scratch after hours of work, I feel like throwing my laptop out of the window...

I don't save the scan after each and every change, or alignment, it takes my computer 20 seconds to save a single scan (core i7 3rd generation, 8GB ram, 2gb graphics card), so it's out of the question.

The undo button in the program now (3.7.1) is so useless, it doesn't undo cleaning, removing a scan from the list, or actually anything that you REALLY NEED to undo if you accidentally do something wrong.

Please, include a global undo button that includes undo cleaning, undo removing scan etc.
Also if you are concerned with performance, make it so users can decide how many steps it remembers, just like in Adobe software.

Thanks,
I'll go punch something now...
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Re: A useful, global 'Undo' button

Postby dangre » Thu May 30, 2013 8:09 pm

I second the undo button. I have learned to save, save, save, but I always seem to erase too much when cleaning scans and wish I could undo. And a cancel button when fusing just 'hangs' when I know I did something wrong and just want to redo.
Dan
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Re: A useful, global 'Undo' button

Postby SeaBorneScanner » Fri May 31, 2013 9:14 am

Not only that, but if you have noticed the 'save' button is actually physically very close to the 'remove scan from list' button and today it happened to me again that I misclicked by literally 3mm and 2 hours of work were gone for nothing.

Make an undo button, and add a prompt when you remove scan from list if you'd like to save it first...
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Re: A useful, global 'Undo' button

Postby travandcon » Fri May 31, 2013 9:38 am

Yes the software interface could do with a few tweaks.

If you use the align function and then select two scans to merge, it starts the whole merge process off again unless you have deselected the merge button first.
Rather irritating when you have a slow machine.
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Re: A useful, global 'Undo' button

Postby dangre » Fri May 31, 2013 2:53 pm

I will say that if you save often, you can reinstall an individual scan and it will come back in the exact location/state you last saved it. I usually save all my raw scans in one directory and save my cleaned/edited/aligned scans in another directory. This way if I really mess something up I always have a backup. I have done something really wrong with just one scan while aligning 40 scans together and all I have to do is delete the individual scan in question (without saving), drag and drop the previously saved scan and 'presto' I'm back in business just where I left off when I last saved that individual scan. This has saved me MANY times. The drag and drop feature is awesome. I have even saved 'preliminary' aligned scans in a separate directory so I can tweak difficult alignments and not have to worry about losing my 'preliminary' alignment if I really mess things up. This comes in handy when I align an object in two or more separate 'sub-alignments'. I hope that makes sense. My new motto is, " save, save, save, its only memory and memory is cheap".
And the 'remove scan from list' accident can be resolved by just dragging and dropping the scan back into the list from the files in your 'working directory'. These buttons are just as close as what other programs have between their 'open' and 'close' icons.
Dan
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Re: A useful, global 'Undo' button

Postby Bobby » Sat Jun 01, 2013 12:54 am

Good tips Dan, thanks!

Also, I have learned that when you work with many scans sometimes it is hard to see the newest scan because it winds up in with others. You cannot get to good spot for alignment pin. If you left-click or checkbox select last scan, it will show bounding box. Then you hold down CTRL key and you can move individual selected scans (keep ctrl down) with left mouse and right mouse will let you rotate individual scans. VERY helpful trick if you are not aware. It is also helping with alignment if you scan rotary then maybe turn part upside down or on side. If you rotate manually these scans with CTRL key and get it nearly close to where it needs to be, alignment is more successful.

In keeping with thread - I would prefer to have buttons instead of dropdown box for free, Y-parallel and Global Fine etc - and pressed button turned red or green color. I often overlook leaving Global Fine, when I want Free on new scan when I last scanned and it kept setting (same software session no close).

ALSO - important to me to keep Shape Fusion screen from automatically popping up after I 'save scan' to transfer it to SF. I do not need to see it each time and want option to toggle on & off this automatic screen change. Sometimes I just want to scan - I see result on scanning screen, why do I need to see it in SF before I am ready to align?
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Re: A useful, global 'Undo' button

Postby SeaBorneScanner » Sat Jun 01, 2013 10:48 am

To answer your post,

Yes, if saving was as easy as saving a word document, then it would have been less an issue, but first of all, memory isn't that cheap, if my laptop has 256gb SSD, my scans folder is now taking 60gb and growing rapidly, if it was double it means either a bigger hard drive, or external storage. Both cost money, and since I'm 2000 euros poorer now after buying David, spending another 100e for a USB hard drive is too much for me.
Second, like I mentioned, saving a scan takes time, I have a modern computer and it takes about 5-10 sec (first message was exaggerated), If I save after each little piece I clean, it's really inefficient work.
And if I have to start spinning the model and examine it carefully because I'm afraid I'll remove pieces I cannot undo, it's also in efficient work.

When I, and many professionals, work in Photoshop for example, you change stuff quickly-undo-compare-change-undo, so you can see the effect immediately, it's so much better, I think alt+shift+z and ctrl+shift+z are the most used buttons for me when I work Adobe software.

So yes, there many ways to circumvent problems with the software, but the point is to solve them and make the use simpler and easier.
An undo button is so much better than saving every 2 minutes of work.
And about the distance of the buttons, maybe in other programs it's like that, but in other programs it asks you first if you want to save it first.
Otherwise it's just silly.
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Re: A useful, global 'Undo' button

Postby Sven » Wed Jun 12, 2013 1:49 pm

Hi all,

Thank you for your suggestions!

Yesterday we have released DAVID 3.8. This thread has initiated a few improvements.
We have moved the + and - buttons further away from the save button. The "-" button (remove scan from list) asks for confirmation if there were changes (at this time, it's not perfect yet: if there are unsaved changes in Scan X and you remove Scan Y, it will ask for confirmation). Also DAVID will ask for confirmation before closing.

Global Undo: This really requires a lot of change in our software, and will require a lot of RAM. We are planning this for the future, but for now I'll have to ask you to be careful. The Cleaning Tool marks selected surfaces in red and it's not problem to look at that (you can rotate view) BEFORE you erase, instead of AFTER.
Even if there is a global undo, there is still the danger of software crash, computer crash, user error (closing the software etc) so saving on HDD from time to time is still important.

In general, when I hear someone loses several hours of work by one wrong click or one software error, I think they are more confident in themselves and in our software than I am. DAVID does not crash much but I would at least save my work every 15 minutes... I become nervous when the last "Save" is more than a few minutes ago - with any software, DAVID or Word or Half-Life2... We have the "fast save" button (under the list, rightmost) which makes that easy. I think it's OK to "waste" 1% of your time for saving to a permanent storage, the HDD.

Limited size of SSDs: That's true. However you don't have to create new files with each save, instead overwrite previous files. And after a scanning project is done, you can delete the intermediate files.

Cancel button for Fusion: Is on our to-do list. Will be in 3.9 hopefully.

If you use the align function and then select two scans to merge, it starts the whole merge process off again unless you have deselected the merge button first.

It's supposed to do that. For alignment, you can select the scans in the list because that's sometimes easier than to click on them in 3D. And usually, after alignment of two scans, the next step is to align a third scan, so the alignment mode stays on until you deactivate it manually.

ALSO - important to me to keep Shape Fusion screen from automatically popping up after I 'save scan' to transfer it to SF. I do not need to see it each time and want option to toggle on & off this automatic screen change. Sometimes I just want to scan - I see result on scanning screen, why do I need to see it in SF before I am ready to align?

I agree... partially... The question is, which procedure is recommended: (a) first make all scans, then align them all, or (b) align each scan immediately. We have asked several users, some prefer (a) and some prefer (b). I think (b) is better because you always know where the new scan is supposed to be aligned to, and you will immediately see if there are surface regions that you have missed.
I'd like to make this an option, so the user can decide what they want to do after each "Add to list".

Sven
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Re: A useful, global 'Undo' button

Postby moog » Thu Jun 13, 2013 12:05 am

I always do all my scans first, then align and fuse later, the reason for this is, i use a not very powerful laptop with my scannig rig, which is all portable, then later, i use the powerful desktop m/c in a comfortable chair (instead of a milk crate) to align and fuse.
I just make sure i have more than enough scans, than i need
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Re: A useful, global 'Undo' button

Postby SeaBorneScanner » Sat Jun 15, 2013 8:14 pm

Sven, thank you for your considerations and feedback, I'm very happy with the new version that it asks for user confirmations!

I imagine the clean tool undo will be resource heavy just as you said, but there must be a way to let the user choose if and how to use it, depending on their hardware.

I also agree saving frequently is important, but if I had to imagine the 'perfect' David software, the undo button should be there.
Of course I try to check carefully whenever I clean something, but I don't like this feeling of being afraid to do things or working too carefully.
The way I look at things, one of the main advantages of digital processing, for example Word vs. old typewriter, or Photoshop vs painting on canvas is that you shouldn't be afraid of making mistakes because they are easily undone, or corrected, so you have much less worries and more freedom, and you can work faster.

At the time I wrote the message I was quite upset, but overall I'm very happy with the software!
Just thinking of ways to make it better
:)

Also, if we are already talking about user friendly interface:
Will it be possible to change the panning/rotating system? when the cleaning tool is selected you can only rotate and not pan. then you have to unselect the tool, pan, and re select the clean tool, a minor annoyance.
Can you make like panning is by holding down middle mouse button, or both left and right buttons for computers without a middle mouse button?
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Re: A useful, global 'Undo' button

Postby Bobby » Sat Jun 15, 2013 11:59 pm

Even the very expensive programs for mesh and points work have very limited undo features. It takes MUCH memory to go backwards. DAVID scans so fast, if you make mistake - smack hand and re-scan :D Living and learning.
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