Posts tagged with 'open source'

Functy 0.33 now available

  • Posted on November 2, 2014 at 9:03 pm

This latest version has two main new features. First it allows animations to be exported as a series of PNG frames. Second you can also now export in Simple Voxels (SVX) format. This is a neat new format that represents a model as a volume rather than a surface as would normally be the case with STL or PLY files. Functy is ideally set up for this, since the objects are mathematically defined anyway. SVX files are also ideally suited to 3D printing, which ultimately is working with 3D volumes too.

Even though it’s new, Shapeways already allow upload of models in SVX format, and you can see an example - my first attempt - on the Shapeways site.

There have been some more minor improvements too. For the first time ever, Functy now has an About window. Only a small thing, but long overdue. It’s been on the back-burner for a while, since until recently Ubuntu’s version of Glade crashed when creating dialogues. Ironically I didn’t end up including it in the gtk-builder file anyway. Never mind. There’s also a new Progress window to make long exports bearable. SVX export can take some time, so this became a necessity. But it also helps with exporting of animations too, since these can also take a surprising length of time when every frame has to be generated as a separate file.

Please get yourself a copy and try out the new features. As with every release of Functy since the dawn of time, this is still a beta version, so please bear this in mind and let me know if things go wrong.

As always, the binary and source is available direct from Sourceforge or via the downloads page.

Functy with new export progress window

Functy with new export progress window

Help wanted!

  • Posted on June 6, 2009 at 12:17 pm

If you’d like to help improve Functy there are loads of ways you can, be it by coding, designing, translating, scripting or just generally being creative. Take a look at the Contribute page that’s just been added if you want to find out how, or wander over to the Contributors page to see who already has.

UI improvements

  • Posted on May 26, 2009 at 8:00 pm

I’m a bit new to the open source development process, so it was quite exciting to receive a patch submitted by Vadi to improve the Functy user interface. One of the big advantages of open source development is supposed to be that anyone is in a position to improve the software: bugs get fixed, features get added and improvements get committed at a faster pace.

To my mind this is a great example. Although Ubuntu/Gnome is an environment I use a fair bit, I’m not as familiar with its UI conventions as many other people are. Nonetheless, user interface consistency is the sort of thing that can make or break a program (or platform) and has a real impact on a user’s experience. So it’s great to get a patch that improves Functy in just this way.

Compare and contrast the old version of the Functy function list window with the new version shown below. For a start, it has nice icons that improve the appearance. More importantly, as Vadi points out in the forums, it also fits with the standard style better, as you can see by taking a look at the interface for the Gnome Network Manager applet shown below right.

The Functy interface is still a bit non-standard (maybe because I dislike menus?), but for me this is a nice improvement to the program in an area where it takes experience that I don’t have. So while I’m sure there are problems for me ahead as I get to grips with open source development, so far the experience is proving positive!

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