Free Electron Documented Operators
Common Operator Info
Common Operator

Common Operator Information

Icons

All official Free Electron operators bear the common "atom" icon. But since this icon is also the default, its presence should not be used as any proof of origin.

The color of the icon should indicate a confidence of its behavior.

(FE) The standard blue icon indicates that the author believes the operator is ready for production use. Regardless, there are no guarantees.

(FE beta) The green variation indicates that the operator is still undergoing changes or testing. Users who are evaluating a green operator should be cautious and forgiving.

(FE alpha) Any operators with a red icon make no pretense of being useful or safe. These are experiments or prototypes which may act erratically. Users should anticipate crashing the master program.

Beware that the status and icon on the help page may not represent the particular version you are using.

Supported Environments

The following programs or tools currently have bindings available in the public release. The build process simply utilizes whatever it can find. The run-time library handling will pick and choose which libraries and versions are compatible with the environment it is used in, such as picking a compatible Boost version for whatever Houdini version it has been loaded into.

The following additional bindings already exist and may be added to the release if needed.

Your studio may support additional software with their own bindings.

While the Free Electron libraries have support for Windows and OSX, the operators are currently only tested under Linux.

Maya Specifics

Maya Menu

Since adding Maya nodes usually requires a lot of automated plug wiring, Free Electron creates an 'FE' menu that lets the user add operators into their graph easily.

The Create Operator sub menu will simply do a createNode on the specified node type. But since this sub menu is auto-generated, it can be useful to see what nodes are available.

The Brush Tool menu item activates an FE tool on the toolbox. Many FE nodes have interactive features available in the main 3D viewer. To use the interactive features, the FE tool has to be active and the particular node has to be selected in the Attribute Editor.

The Reveal Stages option tells FE to create a new shape for every operator it adds. This is not the conventional behavior for Maya deformers, but it can be very useful for seeing the effect of each operator if you don't mind all the additional entries in the outline.

At the bottom of the Maya FE menu is a list of nodes that can be added and wired automatically. Many of these have auto-generated option boxes with all the parameters for that node. Note that the Wrap option box is actually providing the settings for a binding node. Much of the behavior of the wrap node is controlled by the settings on the associated bind node.

Maya Sets

Many operators work on groups, a common paradigm in Houdini. Free Electron can create groups, storing them as simple boolean blind data. In some cases, Maya-native sets can be also recognized as groups. Sets are treated as groups if a requested named group is not otherwise found as a boolean data. However, for sets to be found, they may need to be defined in the shape immediately preceding the node that expects them.

Contact

Problems, suggestions, and feature requests can be sent to the mailing list fe@freeelectron.org.

If you really need to discuss appropriate private issues, contact baboon@imonk.com.

If you have local support, then you are welcome to use it.

More Information

freeelectron.org
freecode.com

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