PartDesign modeling tools: Combined or verbose tool set?

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What type of PartDesign modeling tools do you prefere?

Different tools for additive and subtractive features like now
20
54%
Combine additive and subtractive tools and reduce their amount
15
41%
It's a minor thing, I don't care
2
5%
 
Total votes: 37
ickby
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PartDesign modeling tools: Combined or verbose tool set?

Postby ickby » Wed Mar 16, 2016 9:42 pm

I like to ask for your opinion on the PartDesing tool set and what do you prefer for your modeling work-flow. It is about the modeling tools (pad, groove, pipe, loft etc.) and how they work. The following holds for the PartDesignNext branch. There are two options here:

1. Verbose toolset like in current part design
This means that for additive and subtractive operations separate tools exist (and there may come more for boolean common like tools). For example pad and pocket: they do basically the same only for adding and subtracting. This results in the current modeling tool set:
current_modeling_tools.png
current_modeling_tools.png (9.56 KiB) Viewed 1869 times
The thing here is that there are quite many tool which actualy differ only in very little detail. This is especially obvious for pipe/loft/primitives, as they are exactly the same expect additive/subtractive. Pad/Pocket and Revolve/Groove are a bit more involved, but not much. This leads to option number two for this situation:

2. Combined toolset with add/sub optiion
This would mean only one tool for each modeling operation exists but this tool offers the choice if it should work additive or subtractive (or as "common" for example. The toolset would become smaller, but one would need more clicks to get for example a pocket:
combined_dialog.png
combined_dialog.png (33.81 KiB) Viewed 1869 times
but of course the dialogs would become more verbose (sorry for the bad picture manipulation skills):
combined_modeling_tools.png
combined_modeling_tools.png (5.59 KiB) Viewed 1869 times

I would like to hear what you guys prefer. Note that I do not say that I'm going to implement it nor that it ever will be done, I'm just thinking about doing it for part design next (there are also some technical obstacles for this at least for pad/pocket). Also I do not want to issue a lengthy discussion, just a little poll to get an overview.
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DeepSOIC
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Re: PartDesign modeling tools: Combined or verbose tool set?

Postby DeepSOIC » Wed Mar 16, 2016 10:53 pm

From coder's perspective, I'd like them to be merged. From user's perspective - I don't know for sure. Separating them results in less clicks; merging them results in more toolbar free space (and possibly, larger window for 3d viewer). An extra option of 'common' sounds potentially very useful.
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microelly2
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Re: PartDesign modeling tools: Combined or verbose tool set?

Postby microelly2 » Wed Mar 16, 2016 11:06 pm

Bring aspects together is a good thing for end users too, I love it from Blender: key, alt-key, shift-key
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NormandC
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Re: PartDesign modeling tools: Combined or verbose tool set?

Postby NormandC » Thu Mar 17, 2016 12:43 am

I'm not convinced that mixing additive and subtractive tools in the same tool is a good idea. Once the feature is created, would the user be able to change it from additive to subtractive or the other way around? If so it would be a major recipe for trouble.

If the only reason to combine is for lack of space in the toolbar, it is not a sufficiently good reason IMO. All CAD software that I now of clearly and cleanly separate between additive and subtractive tools.

In PartDesign-next, isn't automatic workbench switching enabled? (sorry I haven't tested it yet) It means that the Sketcher geometries and Sketcher constraints toolbars should be gone, gaining that much space.

Another thing that can be done is to group all additive tools and all subtractive tools under two separate icons, like the Circle, Polygon, Ellipse do in the Sketcher geometries toolbar. This is also what Solid Edge (the CAD package I use at work) does.

The same could be done for booleans.
Joyas
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Re: PartDesign modeling tools: Combined or verbose tool set?

Postby Joyas » Thu Mar 17, 2016 1:31 am

Is it possible to add a new preferences option for that?

I think that people who mixes the toolbars from Part, PartDesign and Draft would prefer the compact option.
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NormandC
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Re: PartDesign modeling tools: Combined or verbose tool set?

Postby NormandC » Thu Mar 17, 2016 1:55 am

What I suggested would be more compact than the "combined" option in the poll!

And I mix all the workbenches that I can.
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NormandC
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Re: PartDesign modeling tools: Combined or verbose tool set?

Postby NormandC » Thu Mar 17, 2016 2:00 am

ickby wrote:Combined toolset with add/sub optiion
This would mean only one tool for each modeling operation exists but this tool offers the choice if it should work additive or subtractive
I just thought of something else: how would you name the tools?

Pad/Pocket?
Revolve/Groove?

And what about the tooltips?

It just seems convoluted. :|
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DeepSOIC
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Re: PartDesign modeling tools: Combined or verbose tool set?

Postby DeepSOIC » Thu Mar 17, 2016 7:34 am

NormandC wrote:I just thought of something else: how would you name the tools?
Extrusion, Revolution, Loft, Sweep. Just like in Part.
cox
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Re: PartDesign modeling tools: Combined or verbose tool set?

Postby cox » Thu Mar 17, 2016 8:09 am

I am not thrilled with introducing extra clicks in the business end of modelling by default. It also depends how accessible and prominent(the task pane becomes) Are the commands combined there as well?

In general I think it is extremely important to keep the often used tools in any area where a creative process is happening as accessible and clear as possible.

Pad and pocket is also the first place new users will cut their teth, it does take a bit more imagination to grasp the combined icons meaning.

Will the old style icons and commands be available for adding to a custom toolbar?

How will the python functions for these functions be, will they also be combined? or will you still have separate commands for Pad Pocket. ?

Of-corse as a KDE person I would prefer to have this configured as a preference, but split icons by default.

I have not tried the Part design Next branch in ages. Will build and test again soon.

My 3 cents :)

Thanks for the great work you do, and for the possibility to share my thoughts :D
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ickby
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Re: PartDesign modeling tools: Combined or verbose tool set?

Postby ickby » Thu Mar 17, 2016 8:53 am

thanks for the feedback. Interesting to see that opinions are pretty much split up.

Making this an option is IMHO not an option, too much clutter implementation wise. It is not a change of commands only, it is a change to the document objects and features. So it's done or it is not done.