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What’s up with .duf?
Posted: 02 October 2012 12:46 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 61 ]
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Male-M3dia - 01 October 2012 06:03 AM
Kyoto Kid - 01 October 2012 12:33 AM
fixmypcmike - 30 September 2012 10:07 PM

I just tried to open a scene I created in January in DS4.0 in DS3.1.2.32, and got the expected “this file cannot be opened because it was created in a later version” message.  I believe you are mistaken.

...but that is s full scene created and saved in a later version.  I already know this.  I’m referring to individual content files.


Also if .duf becomes the only file type available and no .pp2. available, then the content becomes exclusive to the Daz Studio application.  This is what I am concerted about.

But the big problem in DS has always been the portablity of scene files. If you bought a product that contained a DAZ scene, there was always a chance that the PA or Vendor created the scene or lights in a newer version of the program that what a customer had on his desktop. Even it is was a point revision ahead, it would not load unless the customer upgraded the application. This seeks to address that. Generally you want to upgrade to get additional functionality, not to load lights or a room. The big thing about duf and DSON is portablitiy.

...“portability” between 4.5 and any subsequent release, but no tie older versions of the app.


As long as there was also a .pp2/ppz file the content would still load.  With how “exclusive”  .duf seems to be, that remains to be seen.

...

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Posted: 02 October 2012 01:00 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 62 ]
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LeatherGryphon - 01 October 2012 07:16 AM
Kyoto Kid - 30 September 2012 08:24 PM

...I don’t, as I burned out on programming years ago.

...


Interesting!  In 1967 I was a college sophomore and had my first programming course (FORTRAN).  Up until then I was heading for a career as an electrical engineer.  However, I had quickly determined that I really wasn’t “grok"ing the concept of circuit design. 

However, programming was a perfect match for the way my brain worked.  I only had two programming courses my whole career (FORTRAN and COBOL) but taught myself a dozen different assembler languages and a similar number of high level languages.  I memorized the detailed instruction set behavior for an equal number of CPU and CPU chips.  I became a top expert in some of them and was teaching programming to space center and other government employees.

Then after about 30 years my brain just seemed to burn out.  As new languages appeared I was just not interested.  I kept asking “why?”  “Why is this language necessary?”  “Why do I need to spend all this effort to learn yet another subtly different language that could in most cases be done equally well in an existing language?”.

What’s more, I became disillusioned with the inevitable change in programming culture.  Back in the old days one was presented with a problem and one came up with solutions that often required in depth analysis of the fundamentals of the problem that gave you an unparalleled breadth of understanding of all the issues surrounding this problem and challenged you with trying to extract the salient issues and reduce the solution so that it would fit in a computer of the day.  A task not unlike fitting 4 pounds of Crisco into a 3 pound can.

The change to high level programming languages was intended to avoid having to rewrite program code to accomodate different CPU and operating system structures.  What I saw happening was the dependence on CPUs and OSs was minimized but was replaced by dependence on browser and existing subroutine libraries.  The subroutine libraries are by design, generalized machines.  Their internal workings are a mystery because nobody actually writes documents to that level anymore.  Error reporting is reduced to “Gack, I can’t handle this so I’ll ignore it!”  The poor programmer is now reduced to playing “Whack-a-Mole” with the ever shifting, muddy foundation of the library, browser or OS du-jour.  Spending 5% of his effort on the problem algorithm and 95% of his effort on making it work, and continue to work, in the morass of unstable environments.

UNIX was a great idea and it lies at the heart of all the biggest machines and networks but all the sprout up sub-species have been a distraction.

And the biggest cultural change I observed was the opening up of computer programming to the unwashed masses.  Now, any idiot that can create a “Hello World” program in Basic thinks they’re a programmer.  That might have been OK when computers were strictly one user, one thread and unnetworked.  But I know from experience that writing a sophisticated program that behaves properly in multi-CPU, multi-thread, multi-user, virtual, networked environments requires thinking in 5 dimensions.  Sure there are subroutine libraries that are supposed to make that task easy but as I noted above they are generalized solutions and don’t always exactly fit the job.  AND you’re dependent on how well they were written and how prescient their creator was in being able to predict how it would be used.  Ever wonder why unpredictable, mysterious “blue screens” and “hangs” happen?  I know why, and it’s a dirty little secret the average programmer hasn’t got a clue to and cannot solve by themselves.

Yep, I burned out about a decade ago.  Blew a fuse, melted a few billion brain cells.  Now I just sit back and draw pretty pictures and let the minions at DAZ scurry around like ants under the magnifying glass of a 7 year old discovering the burning power of the sun! 8-o

...well said. 

I’m from those “early days” (even worked in binary).  I remember having to actually (gasp) document my code.  Who in the blazes documents code, or any process for that matter these days?

This whole HTML and scripting thing is absolute voodoo if you ask me.  I just want a programme that lets me create art from an artist’s rather than a programer’s point of view. One that is intuitive and isn’t a perpetual beta test.

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Posted: 02 October 2012 05:01 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 63 ]
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Kyoto Kid - 02 October 2012 12:46 AM

...“portability” between 4.5 and any subsequent release, but no tie older versions of the app.

Nothing was really standard before 4.5, so obviously that’s not possible.

As long as there was also a .pp2/ppz file the content would still load.  With how “exclusive”  .duf seems to be, that remains to be seen.

...

Poser formats are not theirs to modify for their standards. Also in a previous post (most likely in the old forum), DAZ detailed why they were using this new standard, particularly since you could share work you didn’t own within the poser formats… namely the pz3 scene files. The duf only will load things you own.

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Posted: 02 October 2012 07:58 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 64 ]
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Kyoto Kid - 02 October 2012 01:00 AM

...
...well said. 

I’m from those “early days” (even worked in binary).  I remember having to actually (gasp) document my code.  Who in the blazes documents code, or any process for that matter these days?

This whole HTML and scripting thing is absolute voodoo if you ask me.  I just want a programme that lets me create art from an artist’s rather than a programer’s point of view. One that is intuitive and isn’t a perpetual beta test.

Nice to get some comments from a couple of “ancient ones” like me.

Comments in programs…  Yep, that was what I was most proud of.  My first programming instructor said he had to be able to read my programs and understand what they did, and how they did it just from the comments.  I got an “A” for the class.  The habit of documenting the code with running commentary on the philosophy of the algorithm stuck with me my whole career.  I could produce the published documentation just by stripping out the code and adding page numbers.  This was especially useful when I had particularly clever solutions to problems involving integer shifts, masks, and concatenations to implement specialized high speed fixed-point arithmetic for real-time processes.

I could pick up a program years later and just from the comments be reminded of all the details in play and what each part of the algorithm was doing in the big picture.  Modern script languages are so compact and cryptic that in order to document them properly you’d need a page of text between each statement.  Just try coming back to a script 2 years later and deciphering it.  I don’t envy programmers in these times.

And as for Voo-Doo, yeah, script languages get pretty cryptic but as much as I liked and was expert at “C” (not C++, not C#, just C), I often described it as a language that in order to read it you had to start in the middle and oscillate left & right, to the line ends; and up & down toward top & bottom, memorizing everything along the way. 8-o BUT, you could insert adequate documentation phrases & even paragraphs easily.

The power of “C” was the forced structured programming practice and the definition of variable types, and that it could let you easily write code nearly as powerful as assembler language.  However, its drawback was that you could shoot yourself in the foot just as easily. 8-o Solution? “ It hurts when you do that so don’t do that!”  (i.e. when driving a car, pay attention to the road)

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Posted: 02 October 2012 02:39 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 65 ]
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Reading the programming experience of some members here makes me smile. Smiling eases the pangs that this moving to new files formats for a simple user like me. I don’t need portability, or whatever the main advantage was promoted. I need stability, consistency, and EASE of use at a reasonable price.

So here’s a user pov. After all, this art business of putting costumes on figures is a paper doll kind of thing. Most paper doll costumes only fit the cardboard model at the places where the tabs fit. So “morph” characters, as I understand them only accept their morph stuff, say “Princess Snarff” Only stuff designed as “Princess Snarff” and her spinoffs will fit… no matter what the dang file formatting is. The “tabs” mentality is still underlying the actual artistic use. I mean for the most part of artistic works that end up being 2d, as all of mine does.

The appeal of Genesis initially for me was that the morph “tabs” were no longer necessary to drape the figure in a costume. Posing would self-adjust. Well, that hasn’t happened for me. Even with the Genesis Waitress skirt, a simple stance pose that comes with the figure it was presumeably designed for juts the knee out through the skirt and the mesh fix distorts the texture. An old tweak maneuver… tilt-the -costume forwards trick made it useable from the front and that wasn’t so clear to a user like me—use the pelvis, tilt until knee is covered, etc according to a wise old artist here on DAZ forums. It’s Paperdoll imagery still, can’t see how that would help anyone with 3dmovement. Just sayin. I could have taken art classes in hand drawing in the time I’ve spent trying to learn out to load pre-drawn models.

I bought a 1950s Noah Webster dictionary a few years ago. A young basically illiterate aquaintance asked why on earth would I buy such an old book,  why didn’t I buy the latest dictionary? I said I planned to read books written over 100 years ago and might find words that I needed to have definitions for that are no longer included in modern references. This is also in line with a rumor I heard that at least one school system in my state planned to quit teaching cursive or script handwriting. That would make it difficult to read the original Constitution, I thought, if nothing else seemed worth reading in script. Can’t you see it? The Assyrians pushing cunieform over Aegyptian hieroglyphics ‘cause they could be punched with a wedge instead of sketched? Ok everyone, get with the program, LOL!

Seriously, as LeatherGryphon said, I just want to sooth my brain and create artistically, and let the left hand side of the brain relax. I got sidetracked for HOURS in making metadata for content. I don’t want to do that, I want to make a scene, put some props and a character in it and render it pretty. I suspect that this current metadata thing is a fad anyway. No doubt some other kind of classification system will supersede this one, as it is really clunky. I’ve made databases myself, and I’d do it differently and I don’t have the expertise of the aforementioned programmers. Does anyone else see the MEGABYTES of space now being used up with these definitions? How is that more efficient or faster or more portable? I “woke” up from the meta-making and went to my Bryce for a nice cloudy landscape.

DAZ appears (to me) to have become more techno with a kind of learn-it-or-die attitude that I find disrespectful of the artist in me, much less the adult. Believe it or not, kiddies, experience and adaptibility in less specific conditions is a good survival trait.. And so is having a sense of humor. It’s just paper dolls set up in photons. The really crazy thing is that I have bought the license to manipulate these particular photon sets, but actually own nothing at all. It’s worse than paper dolls, it’s the Emperor’s New Clothes. Now there’s a set of textures to download! LOL!

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Posted: 02 October 2012 03:56 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 66 ]
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Kyoto Kid - 02 October 2012 01:00 AM

...well said. 

I’m from those “early days” (even worked in binary).  I remember having to actually (gasp) document my code.  Who in the blazes documents code, or any process for that matter these days?

This whole HTML and scripting thing is absolute voodoo if you ask me.  I just want a programme that lets me create art from an artist’s rather than a programer’s point of view. One that is intuitive and isn’t a perpetual beta test.

I actually crashed Honeywell’s COBOL-74 compiler when we were converting to their system - it couldn’t handle more than 99 lines of comment in one chunk - and I had a 3-page full logic description of an esoteric edit program stuffed in the identification division.

And while I can handle HTML I’ve got no clue on how to convert it to readable form (couldn’t write a browser to save my redacted).

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Posted: 02 October 2012 06:23 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 67 ]
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Kyoto Kid - 02 October 2012 12:46 AM

...“portability” between 4.5 and any subsequent release, but no tie older versions of the app.

.daz doesn’t either.  In hindsight, it would have been better if the .daz format had been designed to be backwards-compatible, but it isn’t.  Would it have been better to just continue forever with a file format that isn’t backwards compatible, so as to avoid having to change the extension?  Or maybe they should have changed the format but still called it .daz?

Kyoto Kid - 02 October 2012 12:46 AM

As long as there was also a .pp2/ppz file the content would still load.  With how “exclusive”  .duf seems to be, that remains to be seen.

What do you mean by “exclusive”?

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Posted: 02 October 2012 06:41 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 68 ]
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IceScribe - 02 October 2012 02:39 PM

            [snip]
The appeal of Genesis initially for me was that the morph “tabs” were no longer necessary to drape the figure in a costume. Posing would self-adjust. Well, that hasn’t happened for me. Even with the Genesis Waitress skirt, a simple stance pose that comes with the figure it was presumeably designed for juts the knee out through the skirt and the mesh fix distorts the texture. An old tweak maneuver… tilt-the -costume forwards trick made it useable from the front and that wasn’t so clear to a user like me—use the pelvis, tilt until knee is covered, etc according to a wise old artist here on DAZ forums. It’s Paperdoll imagery still, can’t see how that would help anyone with 3dmovement. Just sayin. I could have taken art classes in hand drawing in the time I’ve spent trying to learn out to load pre-drawn models.

Did you try smoothing & collision?

In case you didn’t, here’s a text version of a video that’ll probably be up to someone else to link. Click me.

            [snip]

Seriously, as LeatherGryphon said, I just want to sooth my brain and create artistically, and let the left hand side of the brain relax. I got sidetracked for HOURS in making metadata for content. I don’t want to do that, I want to make a scene, put some props and a character in it and render it pretty.

I totally agree with the frustration. It seems a law of the computerverse, that if you attempt to do anything creative you will be saddled with an enormity of chores.

I probably wouldn’t take the time to write a raftfull of metadata. There are other ways to find non-metadata items. It gets futzy, fast, when you toggle between. But I’ve got so much crap with metadata, there’s a good chance I might not have to hunt through the crap without metadata, in any given session.

Ok, my brain is mush, and despite my best attempts some of this is coming out as potentially snide. So please remember, I don’t mean to be evil. smile

I suspect that this current metadata thing is a fad anyway. No doubt some other kind of classification system will supersede this one, as it is really clunky. I’ve made databases myself, and I’d do it differently and I don’t have the expertise of the aforementioned programmers.

Is the new thing better? Bring it on! As long as it imports my existing metadata. It not, it can perform unlikely obscenities upon itself. smile

Does anyone else see the MEGABYTES of space now being used up with these definitions? How is that more efficient or faster or more portable? I “woke” up from the meta-making and went to my Bryce for a nice cloudy landscape.

Would there be a more compact way to contain that data? (Without heavy compression slowing down the reads).

 

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Posted: 02 October 2012 07:10 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 69 ]
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fixmypcmike - 02 October 2012 06:23 PM
Kyoto Kid - 02 October 2012 12:46 AM

As long as there was also a .pp2/ppz file the content would still load.  With how “exclusive”  .duf seems to be, that remains to be seen.

What do you mean by “exclusive”?

I think it’s on the subject of store items stored in duf, for those unable or unwilling to run DS4.5.(+)

(Unless I’m still screwed up about DUF).

While the Poser subset can look forward to an importer, somewhere below the visible horizon; the older-Studios subset, would be less likely to see one, because they’re a smaller group.(Because the Poser-no-DS4.5-ites are a slice of the Poser users. The old-Studio-no-DS4-istes are a slice of old-Sudio-ites).

The unable group is likely to shrink, over time, as newer versions come in, and more of them are able to get better hardware.
The unwilling group could be seen as having made their choice.

(Note: A small group is just as deserving of sympathy, as a larger one, but in cold reality, the smaller group is less likely to motivate someone to devote a lot of programming time). (Also the old-Studio users would see fewer and fewer Daz materials in the new items they can use, whereas the Poser ones can continue to get native content all over the place). [Not a Poser vs. Daz issue, just a situation]


But in the end, there are other stores, where duf items are likely to always be a much smaller percentage of items, than at Daz’s store.


It’s not too surprising to hear frustrations being heard from whoever might feel deprived.


I hope I don’t wake up to discover I’ve typed posts full of gibberish, heh.

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Posted: 02 October 2012 09:11 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 70 ]
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fixmypcmike - 02 October 2012 06:23 PM
Kyoto Kid - 02 October 2012 12:46 AM

As long as there was also a .pp2/ppz file the content would still load.  With how “exclusive”  .duf seems to be, that remains to be seen.

What do you mean by “exclusive”?

...well if .duf is to be the new “standard” and becomes the only file format used for creating new content available in the Daz store (and Poser format is no longer supported), that means it will only work on Studio and maybe Carrara (have heard nothing about portability to Bryce yet). 

...that seems pretty “exclusive” to me.

...and didn’t Daz promote themselves as being “Providers of Poser Content” as well (though that seems to have disappeared from the store’s font page as of late)?

...not intending to spark an app war, but, at least I could fall back on the .pp2 files and Poser shaders if the newer Daz ones wouldn’t load.

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Posted: 02 October 2012 10:09 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 71 ]
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Kyoto Kid - 02 October 2012 09:11 PM
fixmypcmike - 02 October 2012 06:23 PM
Kyoto Kid - 02 October 2012 12:46 AM

As long as there was also a .pp2/ppz file the content would still load.  With how “exclusive”  .duf seems to be, that remains to be seen.

What do you mean by “exclusive”?

...well if .duf is to be the new “standard” and becomes the only file format used for creating new content available in the Daz store (and Poser format is no longer supported

So your saying, if .duf becomes exclusive, then it will be exclusive?  If .daz was the only format available in the DAZ store it would somehow be less exclusive?

Your reasoning is rather circular.

Dropping the .daz format, which is binary, undocumented, and not readable in any other application, in favor of a plain-text, documented format which could potentially be read by other applications, is somehow being more exclusive?

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Posted: 02 October 2012 11:39 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 72 ]
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...the keyword here is “potential”.  It all depends on if other 3D app. developers decide to “update” their code to support it.

Admittedly I had my terms mixed up.  it wasn’t .daz format but .pp2 (as MJ007 mentioned) that allowed me to use newer content in an older version of the app. 

Here is a scene I did in 2.3.3 using K4, 3DU’s Kaitey, and K4 clothing (which was developed in 3.x) as the fireworks shaders could not be read by 3A.

 

 

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Posted: 02 October 2012 11:58 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 73 ]
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Kyoto Kid - 02 October 2012 09:11 PM

...well if .duf is to be the new “standard” and becomes the only file format used for creating new content available in the Daz store (and Poser format is no longer supported)

That “IF” only applies to DS-only items (eg lights or shaders that don’t make sense in Poser anyway) and Genesis-only items. Genesis can work in Poser and improved since poser9/pp2012, so vendors could make Poser versions of their Genesis items.  This is up to the individual vendors, though DAZ encourages Poser versions of items if possible. 

More importantly, the above was the case even before .duf - it happened with .daz, .dsb, .dsf, .dsa, .ds - so no change there.  In other words, .duf is just the new standard for DS versions of items, it doesn’t affect Poser versions and does not hinder the vendors’ ability to create Poser versions. grin  For example, If I made a .daz or .duf item, I could make .hr2 or .pp2 versions as I always could, and DAZ store encourage that.

 

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Posted: 03 October 2012 02:13 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 74 ]
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I recall reading something about smith micro saying that one of the condition to better integrate Genesis into Poser was to make the file format “open” (readable and editable with a text editor). So it may be a move toward that goal. Furthermore the DSON format is not DAZ propriety and the structure could be understood by anybody knowing the DSON and they don’t even need to document it.

Even if I came accross some bugs with DS4 like many people, I understand the choice and I think it’s a smart move.

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Posted: 03 October 2012 02:09 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 75 ]
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Kyoto Kid - 02 October 2012 11:39 PM

...the keyword here is “potential”.  It all depends on if other 3D app. developers decide to “update” their code to support it.

Admittedly I had my terms mixed up.  it wasn’t .daz format but .pp2 (as MJ007 mentioned) that allowed me to use newer content in an older version of the app.

Just as it is “potential” that DAZ 3D would stop supplying Poser versions of props.  And IF DAZ 3D did that with .daz files, there would be NO WAY for other apps to import them.  So I fail to see how .duf makes the situation worse rather than better.

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