Supercharged H19 R6 | Houdini 19 GUI & Workflow Enhancements

Yunus Balcioglu / Senior FX TD at Industrial Light & Magic
21 ratings

Advanced GUI and workflow enhancements for Houdini 19

Setup video:

Current list of features:

1. Higher density GUI: Overlay network editor over the viewport for doubling up the workspace, working directly with the viewport, with transparent hotkeys and Space as a volatile key, or quickly toggling the overlay network editor when unobstructed viewport interaction is needed.

2. More screen real estate

    2.1. Status bar at the top of the screen for better visibility and maximizing screen estate.

    2.2. Full screen mode where the application title bar, the OS taskbar and all the stow bars are hidden for fully immersive experience.

    2.3. Minimalist GUI design.

    2.4. Menubar-less workflow: The most common operations are available without the use of the menubar. Install Digital Asset Library: Ctrl+Alt+Shift+Numpad Plus.

    2.5. New Show Recent Files tool: Ctrl+F12

    2.6. Zero head travel: You look at the same area for working and seeing the result at the same time.

3. Context-Sensitive Rule-Based Hotkey System:

    3.1. Based on mnemonics and key layout for shorter key travel.

    3.2. Ability to define hotkeys using a CSV file, and automatic regeneration of action dictionaries on the fly.

    3.3. Seperate action for each context, keyboard modifier keys (Ctrl, Alt, Shift), mouse button states (LMB, MMB, RMB), and selection state (whether a node selection is present in the network editor or not).

    3.4. Dual key actions that bring up a pop up menu that can be populated by a list of operators or any other custom action.

    3.5. Ability to invoke custom Python functions.

    3.6. Automatic node creation and intelligent connection algorithm:

    If a single node is selected it will try to connect all outputs of the selected node to the inputs of the new node by index. If multiple nodes are selected, the nodes will be sorted from left to right and connected to the new node in this order. If no selection, then the new node will not be connected to anything.

    For VOPs if a single node is selected, it will try to match all inputs of the new node to the outputs of the selected node and connect them if the types match. This works great if both nodes have a similar number of compatible inputs and outputs.

    3.7. Ability to set default parameters on creation.

    3.8. Ability to load a preset on creation.

    3.9. Ability to define multiple node types for the same hotkey and automatically create the first available one, in case a node type is not available in a different build.

    3.10. Transparent hotkeys that go through the overlay network editor and act on the current viewport, for actions such as Frame Selection/All, switch to different shading modes, switching to different views, toggling the transparency of the overlay network editor, etc.

    3.11. Rapid network traversal tools mapped to 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 to display select/select/template/selectable template/bypass the nearest node, and Alt+combo for working on the selected nodes instead.

    3.12. Intelligent actions to convert VOP nodes into other data types based on the first output data type:

    To Float Or Vector, To Vector Or Float, To Vector4 Or Float, To Matrix3 Or Float, To Matrix Or Float.

    3.13 Custom hotkey actions for resetting the network zoom level, pushing nodes in and out, custom jump up action that allows you to ascend to a context-less level, toggling the fullscreen mode, etc.

    3.14. Rapid mouse-bound selection and navigation:

    Shift+RMB: Dive Inside Nearest Node

    Shift+MMB: Jump Up One Level

    Ctrl+RMB: Display Select Nearest Node

    Ctrl+MMB: Select Nearest Node

4. Highly refined desktop for working with various panes, even a stashed network editor in a 3 pane split configuration where all the panes can be toggled via hotkeys on and off or between different panes.

5. High performance code implemented entirely using Python and Qt.

6. Continuous updates and new features as the system is tweaked and refined in real world feature film VFX production.


Fullscreen mode has highlighting offset for popup menus on Houdini 19 (SideFX bug pending). So fullscreen mode that removes title and task bars is currently disabled, but collapsing stovebars and hiding stoved panes is still available in fullscreen mode.

Mac-OS compatibility tends to be hit or miss.

  • Size
    208 KB
  • Size208 KB


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Supercharged H19 R6 | Houdini 19 GUI & Workflow Enhancements

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