Queries and comments on 0.2.17

Wookey wookey at aleph1.co.uk
Tue Feb 10 19:08:46 CET 2004

I've been writing an article about Therion for Compass points, which
includes a complete tutorial on using therion to draw a simple survey.

This process has generated a few queries, one of which needs answering for
me to finish the article - others are mostly suggestions for improvements
and a few bugs.

I'm using 0.2.17

urgent queries:
How do I control overlap at joins? I have drawn a couple of scraps and at
the place where they join there are contour lines on one scrap and
ceilinglines on another that sort of intermingle. When drawn up therion put
one scrap on top of the other and invents a 'join line' that covers quite a
lot of the neighboring scrap. I need transparency, or a complex 'join line'.
What is the best way to deal with this? Do scraps have
to have perfect joins? Can I draw a join line?

Also I tried to control the join in more detail by specifying that the ends
of lines join but the syntax didn't work. What's wrong with this:
join farsidewest:0 at farside2.river farsidewest2:end at farside.river
(farsidewest are farsidewest2 are 'wall' lines).


In .th files - if you use
data normal ignore ignore ignore ignore newline tape compass clino then
every LRUD line must be followed by a data line, including the last one
If you s/ignore ignore ignore ignore/left right up down/ then it ignores
absence of TCC part in the last line, but not in lines in the middle of a run.
This is inconsistnet with survex behaviour (which will let you give LRUD
info for a station and then stop - without subsequent TCC info)

In the test editor, using above: data normal left right up down newline tape compass clino and
then 'scan format' to get data table to have correct boxes is OK but when
you enter data it appears as
tape compass clino
station left right up down
which is the wrong order.

When a created file is re-read every blank line gets a 'text' entry in the
file commands section, and when saved ends up as 3 blank lines - whitespace
text entries shouldn't appear.

If I try to zoom in to 200% therion just crashes (64MB machine, 3.8Mb pnm file)
Is this expected? It certainly makes it hard to draw boulders properly as I
can;'t do stations very close together. The keys list suggets that I can
hold down shift to create a station close to another station, but I have not
suceeded - how exactly does it work?

wishlist items:

It would be _really_ good to have png support in Xtherion? GIFs are a pain
for free software and pnm and ppm are huge. What needs to be done?

Shortcuts for moving things between scraps would be helpful, otherwise it's
'move down' about 100 times. Is there a better way?

Entering stations - ther is a space for 'id' but not name, which you need to
enter for every station. Indeed why is the id not the name?

It's very tedious if you need to change a number of entries - need shortcuts
to move between boxes in RH-side or to scroll up and down items in the file
summary. e.g if you need to change all the station ids to names. Need to be
able to navigate file commands with keys.

graphical stuff

Air drafts need to be able to specify number of ticks - this is used to
indicate wind strength

The QMs ('continuation point) come out really small on my survey.
Where do I control the size?

The debris area symbol looks terrible. I want a quick way to fill in areas
of rocks - needs randomised rocks of some sort with controls over size and
density. Tunnel (java) has good code for this, with an arrow that control
desity gradient. Borrow code?

Areas need some way of working out if they are 'connected' or not. The
current scheme is hopeless - very cryptic messages which give no clue which
area is at fault. Editing them is a real pain as you find the text in the
file (takes a while, especially with all the blank ones) but then as soon as
you click on a line to adjust it you lose the text again. An entry method
that lets you 'group' some lines into an area might be best - especially if
it auto-allocated the names.

There is a real problem with editing a file and using xtherion at the same
time - even F1 and F2 type editing. Therion just saves the map version over
any other version you might have created. It needs to check for 'newer on disk' or
something. Until the map interface is better there is a real need to edit
the file by hand too. This is a tricky problem but it definately needs work
before many people will use it.

Ticks are too close together on pitches.

How do I change the default for contour lines to al have 'none' (no downside
tick mark)? I don't want to add -tick none on every contour - I want to set
a default.

How does the slope line symbol work? It just seemst od raw a lot of
overlapping lines for me. How does it differ from the contour line?

Aleph One Ltd, Bottisham, CAMBRIDGE, CB5 9BA, UK Tel +44 (0) 1223 811679
work: http://www.aleph1.co.uk/ play: http://www.chaos.org.uk/~wookey/

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