Node Screen Editor

Video Transcript

The bulk of your time in Embrio will be spent editing agents in the node screen editor. Here you add nodes and make connections between their inputs and outputs.

When editing an Agent there is a refresh rate selector in the bottom of the editor. This defines how many times per second the nodes in the agent update. You should use as low a value as possible here to save processor resources. The default is 32 updates per second.

To add a node to the node screen you can either drag from the node list in the bottom left of the screen, or right click in an empty area of the screen and select the node from a popup list. All nodes in Embrio were written in Embrio, to see the code that runs a node click on the icon in the top right of the node. More information about how to write your own nodes is in another video.

Nodes have inputs and outputs. When an Agent is refreshed, all nodes on the Agent are processed, taking data from the inputs and updating the output values.

To make a connection from an output to an input, simply click on an output, drag to an input, and release the mouse. There are only 5 types of inputs and outputs. These types are color coded, and only inputs and outputs of the same type can be connected.

Selected nodes have a red border. Select a node by clicking on it. Add to the selection by holding Shift. Toggle selection by holding Control. Hold Shift or Control and click on the background to do a rectangular selection. Pressing Control + A selects all nodes on the screen. A single click on the background deselects all nodes. A double click on the background selects the edited Agent in the Project Tree. Click and drag on the background to move the whole screen. Use the scroll wheel on your mouse to zoom in or out.

When a Node Screen Editor is the active control some extra buttons show up in the top menu.

The first is the Duplicate command, this is a quick way to do a copy and paste of the selected nodes. The best way to use this feature is to move your mouse to where you want the copied nodes to go and press the Control + D hot key.

Next is a helper to move the selected nodes into a new Reusable Node Group file and add a copy of the new group in their place.

The next button toggles hiding or showing any input or output that doesn’t have a connection. For busy Agents this can make it easier to see what’s going on. You can also do this on a per node basis by clicking on the icon in the top right of the node.

The next button is Auto Arrange which has the A key as the default hot key. This attempts to arrange the nodes on the screen in a clean layout. Last is the Fit Nodes button, which centers the nodes in the middle of the screen. The default hotkey is the F key. Pressing A then F is a quick way to clean up a node screen.

You can have multiple editors open at the same time, and you can arrange the toolbars to have multiple editors visible at the same time. When jumping around between editors, use the backspace key to go back to the last viewed editor. This is useful when there are a lot of editors open and you want to jump back to where you just were without having to find the correct tab.

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