Saturday, 6 October 2012

Back to University. Back to FreeCAD. Updates

After my intermission of going on holiday in Europe (if you could call it that) , I am now back at University and have some free time to work on FreeCAD.

Coding Improvements to the Render Module:

The past few days I've tidied up the Render Module and improve the QML code to improve the quality of the UI presentation. In addition I have now implemented the saving and restoration of material properties, so this means for example you can save the 'colour' within the Matte material.

During mid-September inside the Render Module, I tidied up some QT and Coin3D GUI dependencies that existed in the core application functionality. These were trivial changes and other small coding improvements were made to the Render Module.

Building on Windows:

To give the Render Module a greater spectrum of Testers, we would like to get the Render Module compile on Windows. Work was done to implement class definitions that were missing.

There was a brief discussion on building using QT 4.5/ QT 4.6, which the current Windows Libpack includes. Unfortunately this doesn't include QML or/ QtDeclarative Modules, therefore it isn't possible to build the render module on Windows yet. In practice this means that the Render Module will not be available till the 0.14 release, when we can guarantee that most Linux distributions will include this. However, this will give another 6 months of testing to ensure that this module contains more features and improve the quality through testing.

GIT Housekeeping:

Having been working solely on the Render Module over the past three months, in my own ignorance, I have refrained from keeping an updated revision of the FreeCAD source. I've now forked and cloned from the FreeCAD source mirror on github and have set up a new repository and merged the Render Module into a new branch:

This somewhat both complicates and simplifies keeping upto date with the FreeCAD repository and there is always the added difficulty of learning something new!

CAM Module:

I am looking into helping start an initiative to implement CAM functionality into FreeCAD with guidance from Daniel Falck and Brad Collette. Currently trying to work out how this system will work and draw up a structure for this. I will report back on this in short time.