The Attribute Editor is located by default in the top-left area of the main window. It’s visibility can be toggled with the button found in the quick dock-bar button group:
The Attribute Editor lets you edit the properties of the currently selected items (nodes). If nothing is selected, only the document settings are displayed. If more than one item is selected, the properties of the active item are shown.
The attribute editor contains several Property Sheets. Beside the Construction History details, one Property Sheet always corresponds to one Node. The amount and arrangement of these sheets depends on the type of the selected nodes. For most node types, only one sheet is displayed . However for transform nodes, (eg. if an element is picked up by the mouse with one of the Transform Tools) at least sheets with the transform settings (transform node) and shape settings (shape node) and document settings are displayed. If the shape or transform mode have either incoming connections or a construction history, an additional “Construction History details” sheet is present (see figure below).
Each sheet has a header on its top. To open display the contents of a Property Sheet, simply click on the sheet header. While in the inactive sheet headers only the undock button is visible, headers of active sheets have more buttons:
In detail, these buttons (when clicked on them) do the following:
- Open Help for this Node
- Opens the Help Browser and displays the node reference help pages.
- Add an Attribute
- Opens the Add dynamic Attributes dialog. See ???? for more information on Dynamic Attributes.
- Undock window
Un-docks the property sheet.
Undocked Property Sheets are frozen, meaning they keep displaying the same properties also after the selection has been changed.
Frozen/Undocked Property Sheets are handy to quickly create connections between nodes with drag-n-drop
Working with the Attribute Editor¶
The Attribute Editor might be the most used editor, when editing structures. Therefore it is important to understand how it works and to know it’s features. Beside the knowledge of the Attribute Editors features it is also important to understand how smile2 organized data, especially the concept of nodes and plugs.
Each Property Sheet displays the plugs (Attributes) of one node. Depending on the node type, these contents are organized in groups. Depending o the type of the plug, a specific plug control is used to display the plug content.
The intention of this chapter is to give en overview on how to work with plug controls. For a complete reference of all built-in control types, refer to the Plug Control Reference chapter.
Drag and Drop¶
All Control types support drag-n-drop with the middle mouse button.
With the help of drag-n-drop, connections between different plugs can be created. If the types match exactly, and have no sub-plugs the connection is made immediately after the mouse release. If not, a dialog is opened, and sub-plugs can be chosen.
The controls for numbers (and 2D vectors) can be not only used to perform calculation but they can be used to either grab values from other plugs or to establish connections (with automatic addition of expression nodes).
To grab the value from an other plug type the qualified plug name in. (eg.:
To connect the value from an other plug type the qualified plug name after a leading ‘=’. (eg:
A simple example:
It is a quite common task to set a property value to more objects. The attribute editor supports a convenient way to do this. Simply select all related objects, navigate to the property in the attribute editor, and change the desired value. The corresponding property of all selected objects (that actually have this property) will be changed. This works not only for “front nodes”, but also for any history node.
The following animated gif demonstrates this with three rectangles:
|||The Document Settings Sheet is always present. Even if nothing is selected.|