TG DOCUMENTATION

Started by archonforest, August 08, 2019, 04:35:13 am

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archonforest

Lets start here as a new topic.

WAS I was not thinking to write a a full in dept Doc that contains the core of TG. Just to create a doc that takes up for example each nodes with examples and defined words. Lets get the basic of the basics. A full Doc of TG is overwhelming for sure so lets drop that now. I think the nodes are the first stuff to tackle.

I just not sure what platform we can use for this. The nodes in Wiki looks okay and easy to navigate so something similar should be done.
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N-drju

But I don't understand to what end if everything is on the Wiki. You said it... ???
"When dictatorship is a fact, revolution becomes a right."

archonforest

WAS just said that the Wiki is not editable or something?
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N-drju

Oshyan once told me that they had to restrict access to it but would gradually restore it and allow users to log on to it. I guess we'll have to wait more.
"When dictatorship is a fact, revolution becomes a right."

archonforest

Waiting is pretty static and I think we waited enough. My TG knowledge is stuck since 2 years. I am ready to give up on this software. I want to see if we got enough people with guts who wants to share wisdom instead of just sitting on it. This software can go very high but only if we get together and do something.

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N-drju

You're getting extremist... ;D

I could as well admit that my knowledge did not advance far for the last two years. But I accept the fact that I would need to learn trigonometry and calculus for it to accelerate.

Honestly? I do not mind. Instead, I have found new ways of linking nodes and features that I am familiar with and can honestly say that some of my results could compete on equal terms with projects filled with blue nodes...

I think you will call this silly... But observing nature and looking into how clouds, mountains or trees are build, makes you more aware of what you should do in order to bring you closer to the holy grail of "photorealism."

Be careful, as this has already been discussed - there is no possibility at all, to describe all nodes (blue especially) in a definite, word-for-word manner. This is because each node can have tremendous effect on the entire project depending on their usage.

In order to describe some nodes, you would have to describe 10 possibilities and then describe further 20 possibilities arising from each previous possibility. I'm sure you know what geometric progression is... This, actually is the beauty and a problem of Terragen.
"When dictatorship is a fact, revolution becomes a right."

archonforest

Well you are not the only one who is telling me how complicated the nodes are and how many ways they can be connected. This is true but if you would fully understand the individual nodes then you could work with them easily with understanding. Not just trial and error for years. Yes TG is complicated but it was written by one man thus there is a possibility that others will understand it too.

Well I think this can be a test for this "community". We can put together our individual knowledge and understanding so each member can benefit out of it.
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KlausK

Not so long ago I told myself NOT TO take part in a discussion about TG Documentation anymore. Done. Finito. It is going round in circles for years.
We`ll never see a "helpful, proper and somehow complete" documentation. The programming side of this software seems to eat up all resources.
So, deal with what is there. Scattered around, incomplete and to quote the wiki in a lot of places "TBC".

Well, reading comments like the ones I quote here really make me kind of wtf....
First let me say that the quoted passages of N-drju really are only a placeholder for each and every comment made with this attitude
(sorry, I do not know a better word for what I mean here) one can read discussing this topic.
So, sorry I picked you to quote from, N-drju.

Quote from: N-drju on August 08, 2019, 07:56:26 amBe careful, as this has already been discussed - there is no possibility at all, to describe all nodes (blue especially) in a definite, word-for-word manner. This is because each node can have tremendous effect on the entire project depending on their usage.

I for one am not after something like that. I actually think nobody really is.
I am looking for a understandable example of typical usage. If that means to explain the mathematical function of that node is necessary - do it.
Planetside did that already with a lot of nodes. Get rid of all the "TBC" in the Wiki. Start there.

In order to describe some nodes, you would have to describe 10 possibilities and then describe further 20 possibilities arising from each previous possibility.

No, you would not. Only in a ideal world where time and money is not an issue.
Did you read the thread about the "distribution shader" Rene started a few days back?
Look at the answers "Hetzen" wrote. That is more or less what I would like to read in a Manual describing the blue nodes.

Once again, searching through the forum, the wiki or asking questions, trying stuff for yourself is not the path to wisdom for everyone.
Users like Ulco seem to be very good in getting where they want using this method, for example.
But, one big difference here is that it is his day to day work (at least that is what I presume).
The Occasional User (me included) does not get to that level this way, I think.
The simple truth is some can - others can`t. For those who can`t this Helpfile-Documentation-Manual-UserGuide should be made for.
If one gives me enough information in form of examples of how something can be achieved to realize where my shortcomings really are
(be it workflow, math or anything else) I can go on and invest time useful and aimed at the right goal, so to speak.
Even then I might never reach the level some of the "TG Forum Masters" have reached.

The best documentation I`ve ever came across is surely for SideFX Houdini.
And please don`t tell me about the manpower they have or that I am comparing apples and oranges.
I am aware of that. It is the concept of there helpfiles which is topnotch.

Quote from: archonforest on August 08, 2019, 09:25:57 amWell I think this can be a test for this "community". We can put together our individual knowledge and understanding so each member can benefit out of it.

Forget it. Sounds harsh - but in my view the "community effort saves the day" is just a myth.
That is what I think about this.
What more do you expect than all you get here in the forum.
Almost everyone I wish for here has shared knowledge, files, solutions and motivations you could not buy for any money.
And on the other hand NWDA closed its doors because sales did not justify keeping it online any longer.
And that was almost the stuff you get here for free from these guys.


I would not want to imagine where Terragen would be without this...

Last words: if I were KING! -->> Planetside should start small.
Get the things finished that are already there. Finish the Wiki. With the (presumed) manpower and time at hand (from observation) available
this already will take long enough. Once you get this done, open the Wiki up again to users who want to contribute in a moderated fashion.
Papers have to be proofread by Employees or Masters, for example, before uploaded.

The Waiting is not over, I fear...harharhar

CHeers, Klaus

ps: a lot of Last Words, right? I hope I have not completely lost myself in the lamenting and Non-Sense. Thanks for your time.

/ ASUS WS Mainboard / Dual XEON E5-2640v3 / 64GB RAM / NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 TI / Win7 Ultimate

archonforest

People it can be done. Look at Blender. They had a very very non user friendly software for years. They lost hundreds or perhaps thousands customers. But there were some brave souls who kept disagree and kept making video tutorials and write-ups by the hundred! And look at Blender today. As an example I started with Blender a year ago and learned A LOT just from the Tuts that are online. They have hundreds!!

If nobody gets excited about the Wiki then f...it. We can take up each node here one by one and talk about them. We have seriously great minds around. How about that? In fact I will start a new topic right away. Lets see how it goes.
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Asterlil

Copy editing is one of my hats; I used to edit English-language articles written by German speakers (I had 6 yrs of German in school). I learned to find the sense in awkward constructions and help the writer express what they really meant. :-) I would be glad to proofread submissions for spelling, syntax and overall clarity, even if I don't know the particular node function myself.

Nodes are really hard for beginners, and with threads running all over each other (same is true in Blender) it can be practically impossible to read/understand an advanced user's node set. Project-based tutorials can only show a noob how to do exactly the same thing over and over, unless there's some groundwork, some meta-explanation. At the moment, the meta stuff is sparse to non-existent. I'm determined to learn this software so that I can make wonderful scenes like youse guys, but at the moment the path to beauty is full of sand traps.

WAS

Quote from: archonforest on August 08, 2019, 04:35:13 amLets start here as a new topic.

WAS I was not thinking to write a a full in dept Doc that contains the core of TG. Just to create a doc that takes up for example each nodes with examples and defined words. Lets get the basic of the basics. A full Doc of TG is overwhelming for sure so lets drop that now. I think the nodes are the first stuff to tackle.

I just not sure what platform we can use for this. The nodes in Wiki looks okay and easy to navigate so something similar should be done.

So, a reference manual, not documentation.
Check out my Terragen Discord: https://discord.gg/Vy5FRTE

Hetzen

Quote from: KlausK on August 08, 2019, 10:46:02 amLook at the answers "Hetzen" wrote. That is more or less what I would like to read in a Manual describing the blue nodes.

Maybe someone should pay me to do it? :P

N-drju

I'm not seeing this... Just by the sheer number of nodes that are present in this software.

Still, I could sure write a thing or two. I don't know much, but had success with some of them nodes.
"When dictatorship is a fact, revolution becomes a right."

archonforest

Quote from: Hetzen on August 08, 2019, 03:02:44 pm
Quote from: KlausK on August 08, 2019, 10:46:02 amLook at the answers "Hetzen" wrote. That is more or less what I would like to read in a Manual describing the blue nodes.

Maybe someone should pay me to do it? :P

Why not? Many people selling Tuts. I bought several already for Blender.
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WAS

August 08, 2019, 03:49:25 pm #14 Last Edit: August 08, 2019, 08:20:39 pm by WASasquatch
It's kind of ironic how simple blue nodes are actually, and how bare their functionality is. It's the fact to use them in a complex way you need to have a grasp on mathematics.

Also, I'll add that we are not responsible for the creation of Terragen's manual and for us to assume we should, says a whole lot...

The fact there is no end-user documentation makes me wonder if there is even any software documentation at all that's kept track of the development of the software over the years documenting the project goals, additions, retractions, changes, etc. Commercial software especially, should have technical docs following it's progress. These can be easily referenced to make a manual (and usually how they start, from prior documentation of implemented stuff).

And as far as I know, most the original Wiki wasn't even written by anyone from Planetside. What gives? Oshyan sure seems to know a lot about Terragen, and is around a lot to manage the forum. Matt, of course, truly knows the software and how to write documentation for it.

No offense to Planetside, but how do they expect to make sales? No one with a grasp of any other software is going to choose Terragen without documentation. What's the end-game? People like Ulco, me, and others have been around for awhile, and have learned the software through ambition of it's future. We're a different breed and no excuse for new consumers.

Check out my Terragen Discord: https://discord.gg/Vy5FRTE