# Coin / src / doc / Coin_modules.dox

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IN NO EVENT SHALL THE COPYRIGHT * HOLDER OR CONTRIBUTORS BE LIABLE FOR ANY DIRECT, INDIRECT, INCIDENTAL, * SPECIAL, EXEMPLARY, OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES (INCLUDING, BUT NOT * LIMITED TO, PROCUREMENT OF SUBSTITUTE GOODS OR SERVICES; LOSS OF USE, * DATA, OR PROFITS; OR BUSINESS INTERRUPTION) HOWEVER CAUSED AND ON ANY * THEORY OF LIABILITY, WHETHER IN CONTRACT, STRICT LIABILITY, OR TORT * (INCLUDING NEGLIGENCE OR OTHERWISE) ARISING IN ANY WAY OUT OF THE USE * OF THIS SOFTWARE, EVEN IF ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGE. \**************************************************************************/ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup actions Action Classes Actions are objects that traverse a scene graph to drive some scene-related process, one example being OpenGL rendering, and another being ray picking. At the most basic level, most action management will be done for the user behind the scenes in an SoSceneManager object, and the only actions one might need to get acquainted with are SoSearchAction and SoWriteAction. For more advanced usage of Coin, one might want (or need) to take full control over driving all the actions oneself, in which case one will also need to know about the SoGLRenderAction, SoHandleEventAction, SoGetBoundingBoxAction, and SoRayPickAction. The remaining actions are mostly more special-purpose actions of various kinds, except for the SoCallbackAction. Before going to the step of implementing an extension action, one should really take a good look at the SoCallbackAction class, which is a general-purpose action that can be used as the framework for implementing almost any traversal-based process, with callback-hooks for all kinds of events that happen during traversal. In most cases, one can avoid the hassle of writing a new action, and just use SoCallbackAction instead. */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup base Base Classes This group is just a lot of basic types for linear algebra, string manipulation and misc. other utilities. */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup bundles Bundle Classes The bundle classes are internal to Coin. */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup caches Cache Classes The cache classes are internal to Coin. */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup details Detail Classes Detail classes are objects that deliver additional information wherever the SoPrimitiveVertex class is used. This goes for ray picking results, and it also goes for primitive generation by SoShape classes for the SoCallbackAction class and fallback shape rendering through primitive generation (a useful debugging trick when debugging for instance raypicking). */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup draggers Dragger Classes Draggers are interactive components in the scene graph that respond to, and are controlled by mouse and keyboard events. They are used in manipulators as the user interface for the manipulation action, often many draggers combined at the same time. \see manips */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup elements Element Classes The element classes in Coin are the containers of state information during action traversals of scene graphs. One element usually corresponts to one item of information, or sometimes a group of related information values. The elements work like a stack that is pushed and popped as the action traverses in and out of SoSeparator nodes, and the action will always just inspect the top of the stack when it needs to know a value. Elements are internal implementation details of the workings of nodes and actions, and is not something one needs to worry about before writing ones own extension nodes. Writing extension elements is even more removed from plain Open Inventor usage, but is fully possible for the experienced Open Inventor developer. */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup engines Engine Classes Engines are scene based objects that convert between field values of various types or performs computations on them. The most versatile engine is the SoCalculator engine, which you can write your own mathematical expressions to to get it to do almost anything. The other engines are more custom-tailored for specific purposes. */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup errors Error Handling Classes The error classes are static classes that contain a callback pointer for handling errors of the given type. Coin has default handlers for displaying all the types, but these can be overridden by applications by setting other callbacks. */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup events Event Classes These classes are te event types you can send to a scene graph through the SoHandleEventAction. They are a pretty direct mapping from the various system event types you will have on all the host architectures. */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup fields Field Classes The fields are the data containers in the scene graph. Nodes and engines all use fields to store their public data. Fields can be inter-connected, causing changes at one location in a scene graph to cause other parts of the scene graph to automatically also get updated. Direct field-to-field connections will cause values to get duplicated, while field connections together with engines can create complex networks for such updating that include mathematical computations and logical operations. Field connections are uni-directional, but setting up a connection in both directions will cause a bi-directional connection. Fields are first divided into two groups; "single fields" and "multi fields". Single-fields contain just one value, while multi-fields can contain many values or even none at all. Besides fields that are part of nodes, you also have "global fields". The "realtime" field is one such field. The fields in VRML97 nodes have additional semantics. Some are "event_in" and some are "event_out", listening for events or triggering events. "event_in" events should not be read from, and "event_out" fields should not be written to. */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup general Miscellaneous Classes */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup manips Manipulator Classes Manipulators are objects you can swap back and forth into a scene graph at locations where you have an SoTransform node. They take the place of the SoTransform, continue to act like the SoTransform, but in addition give the user a 3D user interface, using draggers, for controlling the transform. When the user is done manipulating, the manipulator can swap itself back out, replacing itself with an SoTransform that represent the new transform value. Manipulators is one of the concepts that really made Open Inventor stand out against the alternatives when it came out. \see draggers */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup navigation Navigation Classes These contains the actual implementation of the ScXML based navigation system. \sa scxml */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup nodekits NodeKit Classes Wrapping ones head around when, how, and why to create nodekits can be difficult in the beginning. When do you write a nodekit, and when do you write a custom node? It is easy to think in those terms in the beginning, but it is often not an either/or situation. The concept of nodekits is to modularize useful, potentially repeated sub-structures you have in your scene graph as it approaches some level of complexity. They are especially useful if you might need to rearrange the structure of the sub-structure in the future, which you probably will. On file, a nodekit is like a macro for the scene graph. The nodekit will not expose its internal structure, but when read in it will create the node structure internally. The node structure can even have optional parts that are only expanded if necessary. A nodekit will give you access to its "slots" in the internal structure through its fields. Only those fields should be the user interface for the nodekit, the rest of the substructure should be completely automatic, derived from those slot fields. To return to the question on whether to implement a custom node or a nodekit, the answer is to think of what exactly is really custom about what you need to implement, and trim that down to the atomic level (but please stop trimming before you trim away all meaning). If there is nothing really custom in what you want to implement, then it is likely that implementing it as a nodekit is what you ought to do. However, if you do have to do somethingcustom that Coin doesn't support, then implement that part as a custom node, and then, if it seems worthwhile, implement the nodekit you need to bundle up this custom part with an auxiliary support structure to achieve what you set out to achieve. For VRML97, you have something called PROTOs, which is something similar to nodekits, except they are not very accessible from C++, as opposed to nodekits. */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup nodes Node Classes This is the set of nodes Coin implements using the original Open Inventor pattern, meaning they read and write to and from files using the Inventor/VRML1 format, and produce side-effects for subsequent siblings under the same SoSeparator node during action traversal. A subset of these nodes constitute the VRML1 format, and a bigger subset constitutes the Inventor format. The rest of the nodes are extensions that are not part of any standardized format. For VRML97 nodes, see the \ref VRMLnodes page. The VRML1.0 specification is at http://www.web3d.org/x3d/specifications/vrml/VRML1.0/index.html */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup projectors Projector Classes The projector classes are used to convert between screenspace (2D) locations and locations in worldspace (3D). They are mostly used in relation to user interaction with the mouse in the viewport. */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup sensors Sensor Classes Sensors are objects that monitor other objects for changes and invoke callbacks when changes occur. */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup shaders Shader Classes Coin-2.5 added support for Shaders. Shaders replace the fixed function vertex and fragment processing in OpenGL by letting the user define the processing that takes place at key points in the OpenGL pipeline. Vertex shaders handle the operations that occur on each vertex, while fragment shaders handle the operations that occur on each pixel. The SoShaderProgram node in Coin provides a convenient way of specifying the code for vertex and fragment shaders. Coin-3.0 expanded upon the shader support by adding support for OpenGL Vertex Attributes. When using shaders, programmers are no longer limited to the set of attributes that OpenGL defines (glColor, glNormal, glTexCoord etc.) You can now define your own per-vertex data and pass them to the shaders using the SoVertexAttribute node. */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup soscxml Coin specific State Chart XML Classes This set of classes implement a coin-specific mode of scxml. \sa navigation \sa scxml \since Coin 4.0 */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup sound 3D Sound Support Classes */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup scxml State Chart XML Classes This set of classes is a basic implementation of State Chart XML. It is not complete, nor is it necessary conformant to those parts it implements. Currently Coin uses SCXML for managing 3D viewer user interaction (the non-model-interaction part) - the examiner navigation mode in layman terms. The Draft Specification for SCXML is at http://www.w3.org/TR/scxml/. \sa navigation \since Coin 3.0 */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup threads Portable Threads Abstraction Classes Coin implements a set of abstractions over the native threads data types that can be portably used across all the platforms Coin has been ported to. */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup VRMLnodes VRML97 Classes This is the set of items specified by VRML97, also known as VRML2.0. These nodes are different from VRML1/Inventor nodes in the way you structure them into scene-graphs, and in the requirements they set for traversing them correctly (VRML1/Inventor require that you traverse siblings on the left side before the node of interest, while for VRML2.0 this is not true). You can find out more about VRML97 in \ref vrml2refbook. The VRML97 specification is online at http://www.web3d.org/x3d/specifications/vrml/ */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup hardcopy Vectorized Printing Classes The vectorized printing classes are for rendering to vector devices instead of raster devices. You can use this to e.g. generate scalable PostScript images for printing instead of raster images that will become pixellated when you scale them up. See below for \ref hardcopy_overview. */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup XML XML related functions and objects Coin now has its own XML parser that also canb be used from client code. */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup profiler Scene Graph Profiling Coin includes some scene graph profiling functionality. This functionality is intended for use during application development for identifying performance bottlenecks in Coin-based applications with regards to how Coin is being used and with regards to problems with how Coin is implemented. The profiling code can be enabled in existing Coin applications without the need of adding any code by enabling it through the use of some environment variables. For particular profiling needs, the default behaviour you can trigger through environment variables might not work that well (you might have a specialized render pipeline that causes the output to be garbled) or focus on the information you need (the full application might perhaps add noise to the system that Coin won't separate out). In such cases, programmatic access to the profiling subsystem will be necessary to get the better results. \since Coin 3.0 */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup macros Miscellaneous Macros When extending Coin, there are a number of macros one needs to know about and use. */ // ************************************************************************* /*! \defgroup envvars Miscellaneous Environment Variables Various aspects of the Coin runtime behaviour can be controlled through setting different environment variables to some value. Most of these variables are there for debugging and problem-workaround purposes, but a few are for telling Coin where to locate external resource files. Here we will set up a list of some of the environment variables Coin will check for and can alter behavior because of. */ // *************************************************************************