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Author Topic: IDEA: Maya Paint effects screensaver randomizer  (Read 18621 times)

Mighty Pete

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IDEA: Maya Paint effects screensaver randomizer
« on: May 21, 2005, 12:02:11 PM »
This screensaver is a excellent free one that is actually worth downloading. The problem with it is you cannot set the paint brush to random every time it runs. It uses the same paint brush now. I'm wondering if it would be possible to set it up so that can happen. A custom loader. The force of the paintbrush can be random just not the actual brush

You can get the screensaver from here. It's spyware free.

http://decentdownloa...fectsScreenSaver.exe

The Maya Paint Effects Screen Saver is based on the Paint Effects technology in Alias|Wavefront's Maya 3D animation package. The screen saver will fill your computer screen's idle moments with a large variety of natural and not so natural effects. Cover your screen with flowers, pretzels, vines, galaxies, feathers, copper pipes, or any of the other fascinating presets provided. Expand your palette even further by downloading additional presets.
« Last Edit: August 04, 2005, 12:13:32 PM by mouser »

mouser

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Re: Maya Paint effects screensaver randomizer
« Reply #1 on: May 21, 2005, 05:09:10 PM »
do you have a url for a page describing the screensaver?
can you configure it to use different pain brush strokes? from commandline or from screensaver configuration setting?

Mighty Pete

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Re: Maya Paint effects screensaver randomizer
« Reply #2 on: May 21, 2005, 05:27:46 PM »
Well unfortunately you need to install it first to get the link, But I did and I now have the link.

http://tinyurl.com/cgv76

Now it wants a log in. I used bugmenot to get.


login
Login details for www.alias.com

Account #1
    auser123
    123456


Now the good news is it stores the setting in a file in /windows/system32 called MayaPESaver.prf
It's text

Now all that would have to be done is download the extra effects from that site and set it to all of them renaming the .prf files so they don't get overwritten then make a custom scr wrapper to rename one from the list and start up Maya Paint Effects.SCR

Think they would have thought of this already.


Now you'd only have to make two prf files really, I could add the rest to the file and upload them if you want.

As long as I could edit the list to add new ones.

mouser

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Re: Maya Paint effects screensaver randomizer
« Reply #3 on: May 21, 2005, 05:46:05 PM »
yea, this is exactly the kind of approach i was thinking of.

now the problem with creating a loader for the .scr is that for example, you would be messing up the screensaver configuration system, which would no longer be able to configure the screensaver properly (since it would be trying to configure the simple loader).  though this is still definitely a possibility.

first things first,
the idea of randomly replacing the configuration file seems like the way to go, and a general solution that could be useful for other things
so we can imagine a simple commandline tool, whose job was to maintain a list of alternate configuration files and which would simple overwrite a main one with contents of one of the others.

so for example RandomFileVersionReplacer.exe
with a config file that looked like
 BASEFILENAME
 ALTFILE1
 ALTFILE2
 ALTFILE3
 ...

so you would use in your case
 C:/windows/system32/MayaPESaver.prf
 C:/windows/system32/MayaPESaver_myversion1.prf
 C:/windows/system32/MayaPESaver_myversion2.prf
 C:/windows/system32/MayaPESaver_myversion3.prf

and this commandline tool when invokes would simply choose of those 3 and overwrite contents of MayaPESaver.prf with it.
simple enough and general purpose enough that it might find use elsewhere.

now the second part you would need is some way of triggering that command appropriately..
there might already be some tool to let you run commands whenever the screensaver runs.. that might be one solution, though it would probably require running some app in the background at all times..


Mighty Pete

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Re: Maya Paint effects screensaver randomizer
« Reply #4 on: May 21, 2005, 06:34:10 PM »
Well I was thinking .exe as a .scr kind of program. a new exe file that appears as the screensaver it runs, starts up renames the files and then starts up the real screensaver program.

mouser

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Re: Maya Paint effects screensaver randomizer
« Reply #5 on: May 21, 2005, 06:44:03 PM »
yes this certainly could be done.  a .scr is just an .exe with some extra features that make it possible to preview it and stuff in the screensaver dialog.

i was just lamenting that this approach would mean that when you went into the screensave control panel, you would no longer be able to configure the maya screensaver because the proxy exe screensaver would be there instead.

mouser

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Re: Maya Paint effects screensaver randomizer
« Reply #6 on: May 21, 2005, 07:04:34 PM »
i tried this screensaver.
i like it a lot.

for people with multimon systems, it works great with multimon.

so i think i will help make sure this coding snack gets coded.

it does make me think though that maybe one would want to be able to make a tool that is capable of randomizing values in a config file rather than switching between preset configuration files.

so in my previous post i described a proposed program called RandomFileVersionReplacer.exe

an alternaive might be a program called RandomFieldReplacer.exe
which would have a config file like
BASEFILENAME
TEMPLATEFILE

ie:
C:/windows/system32/MayaPESaver.prf
C:/windows/system32/MayaPESaver.randomtemplate

and inside the .randomtemplate file would be things like
Category1={|plants|pipes|};PresentName1=...

basically the idea is that the program would parse the template
and whenever it saw
{|plants|pipes|};
it would replace it with either plants or pipes at random

for maximum flexability what would be nice would be
combine both programs into one
so basically

RandomFileReplacer.exe
BASEFILENAME
TEMPLATEFILE1
TEMPLATEFILE2
TEMPLATEFILE3

so first thing it would do is pick a random template file
and then fill any random template fields while replaceing, might be none..

of course this still doesnt address the issue of running this tool before invoking the screensaver, but it does seem like a nice solution to the main issue.

also i just remind us, its not strictly nesc. to come up with a solution that runs before the screensaver.. running after the screensaver would have same randomizing effect.

but lets assume we do want to go with this approach of a proxy screenaver, let me lay out how it would work

lets called it ProxyScreensaver.scr

it would have an ini configuration file like this:
SCREENSAVER RealScreensaverName.scr
PREOP programtorunBEFOREscreensaver.exe arg1
POSTOP programtorunBEFOREscreensaver.exe arg1 arg2

so the config file could specify any number of pre and post operation exe commands to invoke

the proxy screensaver should also be able to obey the commandline screensaver options used by screensavers to invoke a screensaver preview and configuration of the proxy screensaver.

opinions?

mouser

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Re: Maya Paint effects screensaver randomizer
« Reply #7 on: May 21, 2005, 07:38:22 PM »
a clarification -
im not sure i was correct in saying that a proxy would necesarily interfere with control panel configuration and preview - i guess if its just a matter of passing on command line, it might be possible for proxy to pass on everything to the target screensaver and make it seem identical.

Mighty Pete

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Re: Maya Paint effects screensaver randomizer
« Reply #8 on: May 21, 2005, 09:11:10 PM »
See told ya it's not really a bad screen saver. It's worth the download. See I fixed a computer here for somebody and I uninstalled all the crappy default screen savers and then thought well I got to give them a few good ones. I found this one installed it, liked it but then noticed that they goofed it by not allowing random or sequence on the brushes. Well that limits it. Even if you could time it like play one brush for two mins and then switch to a different one. This would be excellent. Or even start with a new brush every time. This would be one cool screen saver then for sure. 

JeffK

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Re: Maya Paint effects screensaver randomizer
« Reply #9 on: May 21, 2005, 09:58:21 PM »
Thanks for the link, Mighty Pete.  It does look a really good screen saver.  Reminds me of the screensaver I often use - Organic Art by William Latham.  No longer available AFAIK.

I see what you mean by the preset not randomly changing.  I look forward to the application to this issue of the Einstein like programming genius from this forum.  :up:

Jeff

mouser

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Re: Maya Paint effects screensaver randomizer
« Reply #10 on: May 21, 2005, 11:46:46 PM »
ill be working on this if no one else does..
im just gonna wait a while since its a commandline app and a few of the other programmers here like commandline tools, and im working on another app at the moment that im hoping to have up in a couple days.

skrommel

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Re: IDEA: Maya Paint effects screensaver randomizer
« Reply #11 on: July 21, 2005, 07:14:50 PM »
 :) Here's a very crude script for random Maya effects.

It just configures the Maya screensaver via mouseclicks and keypresses and runs it.

To use it, download AutoHotkey from www.autohotkey.com, install it, save the script below to Maya.ahk, rightclick it and choose Compile script, rename the created Maya.exe to Maya.scr, copy it to C:\Windows\System32 and choose it as the default screensaver in the control panel.

Edit: Removed clipboard usage.

Skrommel


;Maya.ahk
SetWinDelay,100
SetKeyDelay,0
Run,C:\WINDOWS\system32\Maya Paint Effects.SCR /c
WinWait,Maya Paint Effects Setup
WinActivate,Maya Paint Effects Setup
WinWaitActive,Maya Paint Effects Setup
MouseClick,Left,55,45
CHOOSE:
Random,random,1,50
If random=29
  Goto,CHOOSE
Send,{Down %random%}{Right}
Random,random,1,50
Send,{Down %random%}{Enter}
WinWaitActive,Maya Paint Effects Setup
Send,{Enter}
command="C:\WINDOWS\system32\Maya Paint Effects.SCR" /s
Send,#r
Sleep,500
Send,%command%{Enter}
Please stop by my site at  1 Hour Software by skrommel  for downloads and more info.
« Last Edit: August 05, 2005, 04:55:49 PM by skrommel »

mouser

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Re: IDEA: Maya Paint effects screensaver randomizer
« Reply #12 on: August 04, 2005, 12:13:21 PM »
very cool.

JazW

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Re: IDEA: Maya Paint effects screensaver randomizer
« Reply #13 on: July 19, 2006, 12:50:28 PM »
Presenting TweakMPE, for Maya Paint Effects screensaver.



Click here to download TweakMPE.rar

Requires .net 2.0 framework.

Enjoy!

(FYI: The official brush preset packs for Maya Paint Effects screensaver all include "upgrades" to Maya Paint Effects.SCR which stop it from working... My solution: Install the screensaver, install all the presets, then install the screensaver again.)

mouser

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Re: IDEA: Maya Paint effects screensaver randomizer
« Reply #14 on: July 19, 2006, 01:10:32 PM »
wow - looks beautiful!
is this something you wrote JazW?

JazW

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Re: IDEA: Maya Paint effects screensaver randomizer
« Reply #15 on: July 29, 2006, 06:53:04 AM »
Thanks, yes written by me as further proof that I have way too much time on my hands...

*Edit*

The link in the original post doesnt work anymore, and the Maya website has been gobbled up by autodesk so here's somewhere to get it:

http://www.fullgames.sk/hra.asp?id=527
« Last Edit: July 29, 2006, 07:05:41 AM by JazW »

mouser

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Re: IDEA: Maya Paint effects screensaver randomizer
« Reply #16 on: July 30, 2006, 11:13:22 PM »
works wonderfully once installed properly.  Really fantastic work.  :Thmbsup:
it might benefit from a little readme about where to put the files, and that it requires .net 2.0.

out of curiousity jazw, did you make it before or after seeing the request in this thread from Mighty Pete?  It seems like it is exactly what he asked for.

i'll wait till you add a readme and then blog this - it's very well done.  congrats again  :Thmbsup:

Mighty Pete

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Re: IDEA: Maya Paint effects screensaver randomizer
« Reply #17 on: July 31, 2006, 05:27:06 AM »
 :D That's the ticket, That's what i was looking for, Perfect, fits the bill just exactly like it needs.

One thing what is so important to get the screen saver working properly is the fact that it is one of very very few screen savers that will work with dual monitors..

Now this is truly one of the best free screen savers there is.. Well other than Electric Sheep.

http://electricsheep.org/

 :Thmbsup:

JazW

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Re: IDEA: Maya Paint effects screensaver randomizer
« Reply #18 on: August 02, 2006, 09:53:49 AM »
mouser:
Seems to be a case of great minds thinking alike, I found this thread while googling for new brush presets, and yes it sounded so exactly like what Mighty Pete was looking for, I thought I'd share :)

Also, as you suggested, I've now included a basic ReadMe.txt.

Mighty Pete:
Glad you like! - I can also *highly* reccomend these freeware OpenGL screensavers to anyone with any number of screens:

http://www.reallyslick.com/

Lord Nightmare

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Re: IDEA: Maya Paint effects screensaver randomizer
« Reply #19 on: March 27, 2007, 11:05:27 PM »
I apologize for the necropost, but this is the closest place I could find to what I was after.
Does anyone here still have copies of the maya paint effects screensaver 'upgrade packs'? alias|wavefront, after being eaten by autodesk, killed off the site which had them on it, and they're not available at the new autodesk site.
Please PM me if you have them or know where to get them.

Btw, that randomizer program is AWESOME! It fills the missing random function niche in the screensaver perfectly! Good job!

Lord Nightmare