Getting Started Version 2.0

Welcome to Touch Creator

This Getting Started guide will help you understand the basic concepts, workflow, and structure of Touch Creator. The topics in this section are put in the order you are likely to encounter them as you explore the application.

More in-depth help content is available in the Help Topics section of these help pages. You can browse through the various topics there or use the Search function to find something quickly. Some topics in this section are also covered in screencasts that you can find in the Resources section.

Note: Portions of the information given here do not apply to Touch Creator versions prior to 2.0. In case you use e.g. Touch Creator version 1.13, please refer to the offline manual provided with the software. To read the offline manual, open a project in Touch Creator and select the Touch Creator Help... entry from the Help menu. As an alternative, you can press ⌘ + ? on your keyboard.

Introduction

The ~sedna touch software suite is comprised of two main applications: Touch Creator and Touch Player.

Touch Creator is the content management application used for creating multi-touch scenarios. Import content in Touch Creator and give it a visual and a logical structure. The created structure determines how touch events are processed and thus how content is presented. The embedded components can also be controlled by custom-made Java scripts.

Touch Player is the frontend application that acts as the interface to your audience. Touch Player plays back the projects on your multi-touch devices thus giving your audience the opportunity to interact with your multi-touch scenarios. ~sedna touch supports 4K touch displays from various manufacturers.

The current ~sedna touch version 2.0 supports OS X 10.10 and OS X 10.11 (El Capitan). Which Macs are supported is described here. A list of multi-touch displays supported by Touch Player can be found here. The maximum resolution is now 4K for each display.

Workflow

The basic workflow of Touch Creator is easy to understand. You can find it pictured in the image below. Firstly, import your content as assets into Touch Creator. Then put these assets in components that you can structure in layers and scenes. Create one or more scenes together in a project, then publish the project to Touch Player where your audience can interact with your multi-touch scenario.
Learn more about the workflow on this page.

Interface

The interface of Touch Creator is designed for intuitive use and for effectively helping you visualize your multi-touch scenario as you create it. This section helps you getting acquainted with the different parts of the interface. Interface
The Touch Creator interface consists of the following panes:

  1. Scene Manager: Here you can view and change the structure of your multi-touch scenario, and also manage the configured displays.
  2. Inspector: In this pane, you can control the appearance and the behavior of components by modifying the corresponding properties. You can assign actions to components and so enhance the interactivity of your multi-touch scenario. Last, but not least, component styles.
  3. Library: Your stored content assets, components, plugins, and templates are managed in this pane.
  4. Stage: Preview and test the multi-touch functionality of your project in this pane. The Stage operates either in Edit or Preview mode.
  5. Toolbar: Control the Stage and publish your project to Touch Player.

By dragging the edges between the panes, you can resize the panes to create an interface setup that best suits your personal workflow.

Assets

Assets are the basic content in Touch Creator. To work with images, videos etc, you have to import the corresponding files into Touch Creator. Imported files are represented within Touch Creator as assets.

Importing assets is easy. Just drag and drop assets onto the Touch Creator interface. The dropped files will be automatically loaded into the Assets pane of the Library.

On the right hand side of the Library, you can see a pane with a preview, if available, and details on the selected asset. This gives you a quick overview of the asset and saves you the time to look for details elsewhere on your computer.

Learn more about assets on this page.

Inspector

In Touch Creator, the Inspector pane is located in the bottom left corner of the interface. The Inspector houses the properties, styles and actions available in the project. This is the place where the appearance and interactivity of the employed components is set.

Which settings are shown in the Inspector depends on which component is selected in the Stage or in the Scene Manager. If a Media Player component is selected, you will be shown Playlist, Autoplay, and Loop options. If a text component is selected, text formatting options are available, and so on.

It would exceed the purpose of this section to describe all options available in the Inspector. As you work with assets and components, we suggest that you use the search function of this help if you encounter a property or feature that you do not understand.

Learn more about components on this page.

Styles

A Style is a stored set of component properties. By having components change between their styles, you can create a dynamic, moving scenario. The change of styles can be triggered by actions, which in turn can be set off by time, touch events, or network commands.

Each component has a set of pre-defined styles, to which you can add custom styles. Each component style has its own Inspector tab. The first tab is always the Original style, which is the initial state of the component when the scene begins, followed by further styles.

The Fade Out style represents the way a component will appear when being rendered invisible by an action or at the end of a scene. Pressed represents the appearance of the component when affected by a touch event.

Learn more about styles on this page.

Actions

Actions are crucial for the interactivity in Touch Creator. Since actions are attached to components, they are managed in a separat Inspector tab within a component.

Select the element that is to trigger the action. You can create an action by clicking on the button below the Actions list. Choose the kind of action you need from the drop down menu. Then assign an event, i.e. the touch event or interaction that triggers the action, and a receiver component that receives or performs this action.

By selecting and networking these actions, you can accomplish almost any kind of multi-touch interaction you can imagine. Hide or show components, start media players, change scenes, change styles, and so on, all that is possible with a few settings that can be easily made in the Actions tab.

Similar to component properties, action properties vary based on which action you are using. Not all of their functions will be described here. We recommend you experiment with the various actions to get familiar with their workings.

Learn more about actions on this page.

Structure

The logical structure of your multi-touch scenario plays a significant role in how the various components interact with each other. This structure can be viewed and modified in the Visuals tab of the Scene Manager.

The top node of the Scene Manager tree is always the multi-touch scenario itself, which consists of one or more scenes. Structuring scenes in layers may help you to easily manage groups of components, though that is by no means mandatory as scenes can be made up without any layers.

Parent components govern the behavior of their child components, i.e. other components subordinate to them. This is particularly relevant for actions. An example would be a component that is rendered invisible by an action. The parent can be set to send that particular action to its child components, meaning that the child components will go invisible whenever the parent does.

Learn more about structure on this page.

Templates

Touch Creator offers a plenty of settings and properties for its various components and features. While this gives you the freedom to create unique and highly customized multi-touch scenarios, it also can result in some complexity creating the need to keep track of many details.

This is what templates are made for: You can store the settings laboriously applied to a component as a template. Once you’ve created and adjusted a component to a multi-touch scenario or scene, you can save it as a template for later use in other scenes or scenarios. The new templates will appear in the Templates section of the Library and remain there even if you open a new project.

Templates are a great way to create consistency in the appearance of your projects and to streamline your workflow in Touch Creator. We highly recommend taking advantage of this feature in order to achieve a higher level in efficiency when creating multi-touch scenarios.

Learn more about Templates on this page.

Stage

The Stage is where you can visualize your multi-touch scenario as you create it in Touch Creator. The options for working with the Stage are located at the top of the interface right below the toolbar. The Stage pane has two different working modes: the Preview mode and the Edit mode.

The Preview mode allows you to simulate the multi-touch interaction of your live project. Use the cursor to interact with components just like with your fingertips on a multi-touch device. Simulate a two-finger touch event by right-clicking on one point and then left-clicking on another point of the Stage. This allows you to zoom or rotate content, for instance. Right-click on a set touch point to release it.

The second mode is the Edit mode. Here you can change the properties of the components, such as position and size, as you handle them within the Stage. Move a component while in Edit mode, and the position parameters will be modified simultaneously. Switching back and forth between Preview mode and Edit mode resets the scenario to its starting point.

Learn more about the Stage on this page.

Plugins

Touch Creator offers a selection of attractive plugins that can be purchased separately and added to any multi-touch scenario.

These plugins are quite sophisticated and may save you time if you’re looking out just for such functions for your project. Plugins are sold separately. Licensing information is available from ~sedna gmbh or from your local reseller.

Learn more about plugins on this page.

Touch Player

Touch Player is the perfect supplement to Touch Creator. It readily receives your multi-touch projects and plays them back steadily on any multi-touch screens or suitable devices you have set up. A list of multi-touch displays supported by Touch Player can be found here.

Touch Player can be used on various third party multi-touch systems. Touch Player has its own specific settings that may vary depending on the multi-touch system it is running on.

Learn more about Touch Player on this page.

© ~sedna gmbh 2016