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Overview

Each parameter can have its content, value, or state defined in the following ways:

  • By manually entering this data as a numerical value, for example for Position
  • By using a Generator that will procedurally create this data, according to different parameters.
  • By inheriting a value from another parameter, using Links

Once this data is obtained, a button representing a scientific flask allows you to add Modifiers in order to change it.

Like Generators, there are different types of Modifiers:

  • Images
  • Text data
  • Numerical data (1D/2D/3D/4D)
  • 3D objects

The list of Modifiers will be filtered according to the type of parameter you are altering.

Most creative software call these elements "effects", often confining them to images and sounds. Autograph offers a more general approach, so the term "Modifiers" is more appropriate.

Modifiers Group

Unlike Generators that can only be used once as a parameter source, you can add as many Modifiers as you want.

A list of Modifiers is created and grouped in a new section available as a source sub-parameter. Autograph will execute them one after the other, starting from the first one on the list and progressively going down.

This new section is called a Modifiers Group and it’s visible both in the Timeline and in the Properties Panel, with the usual differences between these two display modes:

  • The Stack requires you to unfold the sub-sections
  • The Properties Panel allows you to go inside, like a sub-directory

For more information on how to navigate the Properties Panel, please refer to this section.

Modifier order

You have to remember that:

  • Modifiers are organized in a list in which order of execution is read from top to bottom
  • The order of the Modifiers in this list has a big impact on the final result

In the following example, two Modifiers have been added to a logo:

  • A Blur
  • An Edge Detect drawing contours according to image contrast

Here is a comparison between:

  • The original image without Modifiers
  • The addition of a Blur followed by an Edge Detect
  • The addition of an Edge Detect followed by a Blur

Picture

Reordering

In order to control Modifier order of execution, just click and drag them to move them up or down in the list.

Special Modifiers and how they can replace Generator content

The purpose of a Modifier is to turn a value into something else, but some of them can go as far as replacing this value with a target value (progressively or not).

We can cite:

  • Animator: which in Target Value mode will gradually replace the starting value with a custom one
  • Math: which has a Replace mode allowing you to animate a numerical value toward another one, according to a weight between 0.0 and 1.0.

Dual display to compare before and after values

As soon as a first Modifier is added to a numerical parameter, its value will be split into two fields.

For 1D parameters, the two values will be displayed side by side.

  • The original value is on the left: it remains manually editable and not grayed out if no Generators are used on any established links.
  • The output value is on the right: it will be used by Autograph at the time of calculation. It is grayed out to show that is cannot be edited.

For 2D/3D/4D parameters, these two values will be placed one below the other, on two separate lines.

The principle mentioned for 1D parameters remains the same. This layout simply makes the values more readable.

Using Modifers while Linking and Sharing

When a parameter links to another one or is shared with it, it is the output value, after applying the Modifiers, that will be used.

An alternative to expressions, to reduce complexity

Modifiers have been designed to allow you to perform extremely complex operations without typing a single line of code, whereas many software solutions require a type of programming called expressions.

In Autograph, you don't need expert programming skills to perform recurring tasks such as creating a frame that fits a dynamic text for example.