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Enhanced design for controlling fixtures

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Enhanced design for controlling fixtures

Post by Rod_Horning » February 11th, 2018, 5:26 am

I posted a feature request [1461] in the Bug Tracker. Below, in italics, is the text of the request. I would appreciate any comments, critiques, ideas, issues, etc. I will combine your comments and add them to my post. Thank you!

This is a major expansion of the request in Issue 1454.

I have been helping develop a couple dozen sequences (most having about 50 steps). There are 27 lights controlled by these sequences. A few of the lights have failed. The owner was unable to find the same instrument and thus had to replace the failed instruments with a different brand.

NIGHTMARE! The channel assignments in the new instruments were not the same. Every step of every sequence needed to be changed.

I have given some thought to this issue. Here is my thinking as to a possible design change that, hopefully, would significantly diminish the problems.

My idea is to add, for lack of a better term, virtual fixtures to the Freestyler workspace instead of the current fixture definition that defines a physical instrument. The virtual fixture would have all the functionality Freestyler is capable of handling (dimmer, RGB, RGB segments, gobos, color wheels, iris, strobe, focus, pan, tilt, macros, ...).

After the virtual fixtures were added to the Freestyler workspace the programmer would link the virtual fixture on the workspace to a fixture definition for a physical instrument. This linkage could be changed at anytime.

Freestyler would then map the virtual fixture channels to the physical fixture channels.

Sequences would use the VIRTUAL channels, not the real channels. When a scene runs the mapping would be used to send the desired values to the appropriate real channels.

If the programmer specified a value for a virtual channel that could not be mapped to the real instrument a warning would be issued but the virtual value would remain. It is understood that things like gobos would be an issue. Color wheels might have similar issues - but an expanded implementation of Global Color should solve many of these issues.

Since the virtual fixture would be used for programming, a physical instrument could be replaced and, as long as the new physical instrument had the same, or more, capabilities as the old the sequences should run without the need to change them nearly as often as is current.

This is my current thinking. A dialog would hopefully flush out issues and develop solutions.

Freestyle is an excellent lighting program. Raphael has done a wonderful job in creating this program. If he is willing and no major issues are found I think this would put Freestyler at the top.

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Re: Enhanced design for controlling fixtures

Post by Mattotone » July 8th, 2018, 8:39 am

Bit late to help your situation, however you can re patch the output channels which would of accomplished your requirement of swapping fixtures out.
There are also tools within FS for removing a fixture from sequences.

#nb not an in-depth reply as typing on a mobile device.
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