TextureMind Framework – Progress #21 – Gui Editor

All my latest efforts are focused in the development of the Gui Editor within TextureMind framework. With an average of 300 commits per month, I didn't have time to upload a new video, but the application is now almost complete. Now it's possible to manage skins, gui pages and resources. With the gui page editor, you can create new widgets, move, rotate and scale selected widgets, change properties shown in the properties window. You can also create, open and edit multiple gui pages in the same skin. 

When the application will be complete, it will be forked internally to create another application called "IdealMind". With IdealMind, it will be possible to manage resources, create 2D and 3D scenes and design new applications with a programming language. The main target is to create a development environment for quick and easy prototyping of new applications, without sacrificing power and stability.


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OutVideoWork – Work in progress

This application is designed for creating professional visual effects and for non-linear video montage. It will make use of ffmpeg library for the video part and my framework for graphics part, in particular the chance of programming effects with GPU shaders, creating animations with the advanced animation system or ray-tracing rendering.

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ShaderMind – Work in progress

ShaderMind will be designed for the automatic creation of shaders compatible with shadertoy and other environment. It will be possible to copy & paste shaders from shadertoy (or others) and see them work on ShaderMind application in no time, so the new shaders can be saved for the future and re-used for other projects. In the same way, you can design new shaders and export them to shadertoy without additional efforts. The shaders will be designed with a 3D modeller editor, where the scene is previewed with my engine and my material system: when finished, the entire scene can be converted into one or more program shaders compatible with shadertoy. The resources can be converted into the glsl source code to include in the shader program, with some limitation. For example, a small texture or a small 3D object can be converted into source code but not large textures or huge 3D models. The scene will be composed basically by signed distance functions rendered with a simplified material system. Complex resources like bezier outlines for 2D or 3D text rendering will be converted into source code as well.

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MultiEdge Paint – Work in progress

MultiEdge Paint will be a professional software to paint artistic images and for seamless textures generation. It will make use of generative AI to create new images or modify existing images, with the latest features like txt-to-img, inpainting and outpainting, with the chance to setup the environment locally (not a remote service, it will require a powerful GPU) and download the checkpoints directly from civitai.com . It is called "multi-edge" to resemble the horizontal, vertical and temporal loop, but basically it can loop in multiple "edges" of the images, handling multiple layers and maps at the same time.

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IdealMind – Work in progress

Originally TextureMind Framework IDE, IdealMind is designed to manage resources (like textures, materials, 3D models) and to create applications with TextureMind Framework's functionalities. The term "Ideal" stands for: Integrated Development Environment Application Level, but it's also nice to associate it with the word "Mind", which is part of the TextureMind logo.

With IdealMind, it will be possible to create any kind of application, from a simple window with a rectangle inside of it to an entire 3D game. You can create new projects, add resources like textures, materials, audio, design new graphics interfaces, handle input events, render 3D models, execute scripts and so on. It can be used also to create tests and to handle graphics workflows.

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TextureMind Framework – Progress #20 – GUI is complete!

It's done! Taking advantage of the extra time I have now, I finished the GUI associated with my TextureMind framework. Compared to the previous update, I added Frame Windows, Tree Views, Tab Strips, Tool Bars and Docking Layouts.  I fixed lot of bugs, improved the management of resources and events, optimized the algorithms to draw on screen and so on. One of the big improvements is in the menagement of resources. I introduced the concept of resources package. A project and its internal components may have a resources package associated on them which contains materials, textures and templates. The resources in the project is considered the main package of resources, but a single component may store an independent package of resources used for rendering itself. When the component is exported, it may save internally only the resources used for its rendering. When the component is imported, the internal resources are merged in the resources of the main project: if the GUIDs are the same, the component's resoures are recycled, otherwise the component's resources are added into the main project.

I implemented also a totally dynamic model for the loading and initialization of the resources. Previously, all the resources were loaded, stored in memory and converted into GPU memory at once. Now, only the resources used for the rendering between a number of consecutive frames is loaded, stored and converted. Additionally, you can specify a number of preloaded resources associated to a component: the resources will be kept alive only for lifespan of the component. In this way, it's virtually possible to explore terabytes of data stored somewhere, as it is in modern engines like Unreal Engine, or optimize for hardwares where the RAM is limited. Now I started to work on the GUI editor, which is at good point of development as well. The GUI editor will be used to design new interfaces and also to create new skins, with any kind of appearance. The entire GUI system is designed for applications and video games, so it must be robust for a wide range of use cases.


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DWorkSim – Deterministic Workflow Simulator

This application was created with the aim of generating an animated scene where the frames are always the same. Each frame is associated with a number, so it is possible to capture individual frames and compare them, to see if there are any differences if the frames were manipulated by a second application, such as remote connection software. Furthermore, the workflow is generated without excessive computational cost, so it can be used to calculate the performance of remote connection software, without excessive impact on the entire system.


DWorkSim v0.1

For now, there are just windows and text moved over the background. Some windows are rotated to test oriented rectangles along axis aligned rectangles. You can run the entire test or generate a single image with the frame id.

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TextureMind Framework – Progress #19 – ListViews, Menus and ComboBoxes

I recently focused my efforts on the development of some widgets for displaying lists of items, in particular: listviews, menus and combo boxes. Listviews are optimized to handle hundreds of thousands of items without causing the application to slow down too much. Listviews can be configured to draw colors corresponding to different events, such as when the mouse passes over an item, when it's clicked, selected or out of focus. It is possible to select a single item or a range of items by holding down the SHIFT key, or add or subtract a single item by holding down the CTRL key.

When one or more items are selected, an event is generated by a callback system. Another interesting innovation concerns the menus. I used listviews to implement an entire drop-down menu system with a rather classic setup. Menu boxes can be opened and closed in real time. When an item is clicked, it is then reported to the application via the same callback system used for the listviews. It should be remembered that this GUI is drawn inside the screen, so these widgets will never come out of the application window but they have to adapt dynamically to best fit the available space. After implementing the menu it was possible to implement combobox widgets as well. Once you click on the combobox, a drop-down menu will open and the click will change the selected item within the box, generating an event. As for the menus, also in this case the drop-down menus will best occupy the space available on the screen during the window resize. The positioning of the drop-down menu will also take into account any geometric transformation applied to the widget that is opening the menu, repositioning it in the best way.

So I can say that the GUI is almost finished. There are a couple of missing widgets but they are not so complicated to implement. I don't think I will create other videos about GUI updates because I will focus on other features. When completed, this GUI  will be used to create application and video games. The next step is to implement an editor to create GUI pages that can be used inside the applications.

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PC Breathless Demo #1

I'm glad to release the first demo of PC Breathless that you can try on your own PC desktop or laptop. The minimum requirements are Windows, GPU card and Vulkan libraries installed.

You can turn around your view with the mouse and set forward with the up/down cursors, eventually go up and down with the left / right mouse buttons.

This demo is not a great evolution of the demo already published on youtube. The big difference is in the clean up and the fact that you can safely run in your pc without issues (be sure to have vulkan libraries installed). If you like this project and you want that it will be continued in the future, please make a donation to support my work. It will be appreciated.

For now, you can see the third stage with no collision detection applied. In the future demos, I will apply an actual walk with collision detection, and the missing code to open the doors. As you can see, the graphics aspect is very simple without any lights applied, sky, characters or animated textures. That's because the 3D engine is still under development. As next step, I will introduce a new lighting system with PBR. I do not exclude that I will implement also a ray-tracing renderer in the future.

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Old framework’s GUI

This demo shows up the GUI system of my old project "Unrelated Framework". This GUI has been programmed from scratch and makes use of both via software and GPU rendering. In this case, the demo makes use of OpenGL for the rendering. The GUI implements the most important widgets, like buttons, text boxes, form windows, tab strips, list views and menus. In this demo, you can find a some window in a desktop background, with tabs and text boxes. You can minimize and maximize the windows, click on the option buttons, write some text and test the popup menu. The rotating images belong to deferred contexts which are drawn into drawables that are presented inside the GUI's windows.

Currently, I'm re-implementing all the GUI into my new project "TextureMind Framework", which is more advanced and accurate than in the past. For instance, in this demo the text is drawn with bitmap fonts precalculated inside one or more textures, while in the modern TextureMind framework all the fonts are automatically generated by the engine. In particular, the new framework can use both bitmap and outline fonts, if supported by the graphics device (currently, I'm working to implement path rendering and outline fonts in Vulkan). Another difference with the past is the material system: in the past, everything was made to be rendered with simple image patterns, while in the modern engine I have implemented a full and complex material system made by visual expression nodes and program shaders (where available). However, the old demo has been programmed 15 years ago, which is amazing considering the complessity of the features that I'm still trying to port in the modern framework.

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Frame rate adaptation with linear interpolation

When you create a game, you need to consider the target framerate of your application: it will affect the entire dynamic of the physics engine and all the choices that will make the game playable. However, given the big heterogeneity of modern graphics cards with different types of monitors, the target frame rate may not be available on all configurations. It's therefore necessary that the target frame rate is scaled adequately to make the graphics equally fluid and to not affect the gameplay dynamics.

The demo presents one of the existing solutions for solving this type of problem, based on the frame adaptation with linear interpolation for the trajectory correction. In practice, the application frame rate is the vsync frame rate, while the target frame rate is used to calculate deltaT. A linear interpolation of the trajectories is used to bridge the gap between the target frame rate and the vsync frame rate, generating frames that do not exist to reach the vsync frame rate. As consequence, the F1 option is smoother than the F2 option.

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Tetris solver V1.0

If you like tetris, you are going to enjoy this demo. Basically, it is a bot to solve tetris that I programmed many years ago. In this case, the only technique considered by the AI to put pieces into the line is the "hard drop", so horizonal movers and T.spin are not supported.

You can interact with the interface and decide to change the decision. If you keep the "space" key pressed, the AI will solve the tetris in your place, trying to not be defeated by the level complexity. You can also have fun trying to complicate the scenario, the AI will try to solve the level in the best way possible. This demo exists because in the past I wanted to implement a bot (like GemFinder) to automatically solve tetris games. Then, I was occupied with my current job and I abandoned it.

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Mandelbrot navigator

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Old isometric engine

This is an old demo that I created in the past during the development of an isometric engine for a PC porting of the snes game Equinox. The project was commissioned to me by a person that wanted to port this particular game to the pc world and then he abandoned it for lack of money. The graphics look very similar to the snes title, I remember that I did a pretty good job with the porting.

This demo was also part of an old framework to create video games that I developed in the past. The engine doesn't make use of 3D rendering or GPU, it's entirely via software. There was an original idea implemented to handle isometric occlusion with the simple blit algorithm, without implementing any variant (infact, the algorithm could work with simple BitBlt function call). As you can see, you can play only two rooms with collision detection, you can run, jump and hit enemies. Even if you have only two rooms, the engine was capable to handle the entire game. It's a shame that the project has been abandoned.

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TextureMind Framework – Progress #18 – AnsiC Parser

A new AnsiC parser was born inside TextureMind Framework. I'm programming this parser from scratch, starting to implement all the standard ISO C89 features. Most importantly, the parser is designed for being extended to any other language, formal and not formal, which is the main reason why I didn't use another existing and well proven parser, like CLang. Another reason is that the parser is designed for being light-weight and anchored to the framework's internal architecture.

I implemented all the main features and now the parser is able to parse a huge variety of AnsiC source codes. I was able to parse also the donut source code and to get the AST from it:

             k;double sin()
         ,cos();main(){float A=
       0,B=0,i,j,z[1760];char b[
 >i;i+=0.02){float c=sin(i),d=cos(j),e=
 h*e+f*g+5),l=cos      (i),m=cos(B),n=s\
in(B),t=c*h*g-f*        e;int x=40+30*D*
(l*h*m-t*n),y=            12+15*D*(l*h*n
+t*m),o=x+80*y,          N=8*((f*e-c*d*g
 )*m-c*d*e-f*g-l        *d*n);if(22>y&&

Pretty cool, isn't it? The source code has the shape of a donut and it can generate a rotating 3D donut in ascii characters. As you can see, it's not a conventional source code, it's packed and full of tricks to reduce the space, so it was a perfect test for my new parser. I was suprised to see that the parser was actually capable of parsing it, in a time of about 1.37 ms. That would be very cool to execute it now! I have in my plans to write an AST interpreter to manipulate the source code, to translate it into another language and to execute it. The AST structure can be used as well to feed a virtual machine with instructions (like LLVM) or for another compiler backend, like TinyC. The main goal is to use this parser for writing applications with a full access to the framework's functionalities.

Another goal is to implement a GLSL parser and manipulate the source code to integrate program shaders into my materials' system. It will be possible to copy & paste shaders from shadertoy into material nodes, to create super complex materials for 3D rendering.

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