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User interface

In this document we will introduce the interface of botcha3d. When designing the tool we have tried to create a consistent experience that does not scare newcomers to the tool but still offers powerful tools. The main concept we built the UI on is that you, as a user, should only be presented with information and commands that can be executed in the current context.

When you start the application you will be presented with the following screen:

Main UI of botcha3D

At the top you find the menubar that will be either attached to the application (under windows) or in the system menubar (under macOS). At the very bottom of the window you will find the status bar, there you will find tips and messages that the application feeds back to you. If you double click on the status bar the list of the most recent messages will pop-up. In the picture we marked several areas of interest that we will now explain.

A. Contextual toolbar

The top contextual toolbar present information about the current selection and the current context. This part of the UI will update when you change the selection and will present tools that affect the object that is currently under inspection.

B. Sidebar

The sidebar provides a number of tools that will affect the currently selected object. This sidebar will also update with the change of context, view or selection. To avoid overwhelming you we will show the appropriate tools whenever those can be used.

C. Viewport

The viewport will show the model you are working on, either in the 3D view or the 2D canvas view. You can select objects and interact with the commands from this view.

Viewport Navigation

  • Zoom: you can either use the mouse wheel or CTRL/CMD and the right mouse drag
  • Pan: you can pan using SHIFT and dragging the mouse
  • Orbit: you can orbit around the point of view by dragging the mouse with the right mouse down.

D. Side panel

In line with the rest of the UI, the side panel will update contextually with the selection. It will present detailed information about the current selection and will allow you to change and edit relevant bits of the document. As an example, when you are viewing the canvas for a specific object the side panel will allow you to re-order, add or delete each vector object.

Pop-up radial menu

To quickly access the tools and commands that are available in the sidebar we have implemented a radial menu that will pop-up wherever your mouse cursor is. You can click the mouse wheel (or the middle mouse button) to access this menu. An alternative is to press ALT and then the right mouse button, if you are using a magic mouse on the macOS for example.