[Addon] Floating Sliders in the 3D View

We’re entering into a portion of our project where a bunch of technical artists are creating driven animations for timelapse sequences - it would be nice if they could have simple UIs for the few parameters you can animate. So… floating sliders seem like a nice hack.
As to what it does, welp, Title sez it all I guess; On selection, you get some floating sliders for any custom properties on Bones (Pose Mode only)
It is quite a hack! and thus could eat some (if not all) babies, especially if you have a really custom keymapping with the left and right mouse buttons.
Read about it:
Watch the video above or on youtube:

And finally, you can get the code from gitorious:


very cool, makes me wonder why this isn’t provided as convenience type / class by default. I’m adding something similar to TextEditor to allow scrubbing values and auto updates ( a la : tributary.io - drag any of the numbers in the code view)

Hi @slikdigit,

Great Thanks! Amazing useful!
I use a lot of architectural meshes moving and rotating and I can make several rig for your add-on to move it…

thank you for helpful script :slight_smile:

small problem:

It is not possible to click widget axis ( for example Y ) and rotate - it disables rotation constrait_axis for selected bones. (Pose mode, blender 2.70a. )

It is widgets problem only. Without widgets it works good ( E, double E )

Ok, if you want to add custom properties for all rotations and manipulate sliders. But if not…

krokodil, fixed in the latest version!

Awesome addon!
It’s possible slider work with CTRL?. +0.100
Thank you!

floo: possible! I’m still on the phase of debugging/cleaning up the alpha, then I’ll start to add some refinement/new features
My main issue right now is making sure that it works, and doesn’t break default or custom keymaps - secondary is performance and functionality. Finally I’ll add features once it feels solid enough. Things I’m thinking of in no specific order:

1- numeric input, ctrl, possibly shift for smooth input
2- support ints and peeerhaps strings.
3- expose 0-1 ints as bool checkboxes
4- hover ‘i’ / ‘alt i’ over the slider to keyframe fast
5- moving the sliders around the screen away from the bone
6- ‘pinning’ to a fixed location on 3D view
7- preferences that allow hiding sliders, accuracy/ hotspot size, whitelisting (i.e. only showing sliders for specific properties)
8- 2D sliders that control 2 properties at once
9- (if I can figure it out) pre-highlighiting slider when mouse is over

Future plans: implementing a selection-on mesh setup for rigs, to be used in combination with the slider for a new type of rig UI (no visible controls on character, select directly the mesh (sorta) and have sliders show up for custom controls) Should be fun for simple fast characters.

you should maybe talk to mc hammond, he’s been doing some great improvements on his addons for animation you guys might benefit from eachother =)

Oh cool, wasn’t aware of this, can you show me a link?

instal. And don`t understang how it work.

Ron43: basically if you add a custom property to a bone in pose mode, and that property is a floating point number (like e.g. 1.01) the slider for that property appears in the 3D view as well, when you have that bone selected (in pose mode)
This is useful because riggers use these custom properties for animation controls (for instance to make a mouth smile!) and now animators wouldn’t have to look for them outside the 3D view.

I am beginer in Blender. In other 3D soft sliders can add to any animatiable parameters. Your addon work only with bones in pose mode?

RoN43: yes for now, though it is theoretically possible to do it for anything. Right now my sliders have no ‘filter’ and no mechanism for deciding a property; enabling for all would be a bit crazy (100 sliders in the view port!)
For future I plan to have some config; keep in mind, this script is targeted at animators and riggers, so it will be for that purpose, not general user who has a different use-case not to use the button.

Thank you slikdigit, this is a amazing addon!! I have a performance problem though on my linux system ( OpenSuse 13.1 x64 KDE ).
When I try to move slider it’s very laggy. I test it on my macbook and on my other windows8 partition and it works fine.
I notice that you running Gnome Shell, maybe it has to do with KDE?

Ok, I did some more tests. First I disabled desktop effects but it was the same.
Then I tested it on a gnome live cd and it was also the same.
I also tried a different distro (Mint 16 with Mate desktop) and was still laggy.
I think it’s not graphic related because in my main system I have latest nvidia drivers installed.

Very nice. Those sliders should be visible as a default anytime you create any new object. This will allow you to tweak parameters before you start modifying the newly created object (something like key F6) or it should appear after you apply any modification. For example Bevel, Adding Loop cuts etc. That will be much faster than calling F6 or move over whole UI to the left bottom corner to tweak the details.

Something like Modo have.

So… am I the only one that have lag issue on linux?

I’m not sure what the issue is.
It is using opengl commands via bgl to draw the sliders, so maybe those particular ones are slow on linux? you could try disabling the font drawing in the addon and see if that is the issue vs. the slider.

As to showing them all the time: I doubt it would be wise to use this method, because it is quite a hack… it could be more of a research tool into how to enable something like this for blender in a more correct way (via C code support as opposed to python only)
PS: I’m actually on linux myself (gnome) with nvidia gfx… strange.

Thanks for the reply slikdigit. It’s strange indeed as you you don’t have problems on linux.
Recently I installed linux mint 17 MATE but the problem still exist. I test it on my old computer (linux and different hardware, AMD cpu and GPU) and same there.
So I think it has to do something with linux.

Hey slikdigit, I noticed that I had a subsurface modifier on my character so as I hide it from viewport the lag has gone.
On windows and mac it works fine even with the subsurf modifier, or (on linux) if I change the parameters form custom properties it has no lag also.
So it has to do something with linux as I said on previous post. Anyway as I animate I always hide subsurf modifiers so your script works just fine.
Thanks again for your great script!