Direct Manipulation in Inventor 2011
Direct Manipulation is a new feature added to Autodesk Inventor 2011. Its an user interface that enables the user to interact and modify a model, while viewing the changes in real time. The resulting interaction is dynamic, visual and predictable. The user focuses on the geometry in an in-canvas display instead of interacting with user interface elements such as the ribbon, browser, and a dialog box.
The In-Canvas Display
The in-canvas display is a user interface that is overlaid on the graphics window to support Direct Manipulation operations. It typically contains a mini-toolbar featuring command options, manipulators, a value input box, and selection tags. The mini-toolbar enables direct and predictable interaction with the 3D model. OK and Cancel buttons are located at the bottom of the in-canvas display to confirm or cancel an operation.
Manipulators are in-canvas interactive objects that enable the user to easily manipulate objects for various modeling and editing tasks.
Some examples include:
- a rotational arrow to dynamically revolve 2D profiles around a single axis, or to rotate a work plane around an edge.
- a distance arrow to dynamically drag the extrusion distance of one or more 2D profiles, or drag the distance of an offset parallel work plane.
- a sphere to locate the center of a hole, or to adjust the taper angle of an extrusion.
The mini-toolbars display in-canvas buttons that provide quick access to frequently used commands and command options. They are located in close proximity to a selected object in the graphics window. Button flyouts display command options where appropriate.
When an edge is selected, the mini-toolbar displays Fillet and Chamfer command buttons. A Cancel button is also displayed.
When a face is selected, the mini-toolbar displays command buttons to perform Edit Feature, Edit Sketch, or Create Sketch operations. A Cancel button is also displayed.
When a sketch is selected, the mini-toolbar displays Extrude, Revolve, Hole, and Edit Sketch command buttons. A Cancel button is also displayed.
Selection tags are labels that appear in the in-canvas display and prompt for the selection of profiles, faces, and axes for feature creation and editing.
Once a profile, face, or axis has been selected, selection tags assume a nearly transparent appearance to indicate that the selection has been satisfied.
Value input box
The value input box is used to enter numeric values for modeling and editing operations. It is located just above the mini-toolbar in the in-canvas display.