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2019-06-14 Part Groups, Custom Fences and Walls, Under Water Construction
#1
Part Groups
Some parts in building and spacecraft designs can be named. Besides defining the name of a room in the design, naming is used to group parts together that need to be lit similarly. An exception is the mesh, which cannot be named; it is associated to a room for lighting. This needs to be changed in preparation for custom fences and walls.

Part names changed to a common group property on all parts.
  • All parts can now be assigned a group name.
  • A Group column was added to the parts list. Right click selected parts, in the parts list, to change their group.
  • In building designs, groups are rooms. The exception is the reserved group name Hull, whose parts are considered to be hull parts.
  • Parts with a blank group name are considered to be part of the hull.
  • In fence/wall designs, two group names are reserved: Post and Section, to distinguish between parts of the fence post and the fence section.
  • When loading older drawings, part names are automatically converted to group names. Meshes associated with a room are automatically grouped with the room and the association is removed.
  • Meshes can no longer be associated with rooms.
  • Designer Usage Tips documentation was updated.
Custom Fences and Walls
Will it be possible to let us define the repeating segments for fences and walls ourselves one day?

This is done, with a few minor issues remaining.
  • Fence/Wall structure added to building designer.
  • Fence/Wall designs look for parts in two groups: Post and Section.
  • Post group contains the meshes and barrier of a typical fence post, created at the drawing origin, which will be its ground level location.
  • Section group contains the meshes and barrier of a typical fence section, drawn from the origin, extending in the +X direction.
  • Section group +X extent defines the section length, which is also the center-to-center post spacing.
    • When built, the actual post spacing could vary, to achieve uniform post spacing and when conforming to terrain.
    • Post only designs should place a tiny mesh underground in the section, to establish the +X extent.
  • Only mesh and barrier parts are used to create posts and sections.
  • Barriers are used to define the obstructive parts of the post and the section.
    • These should be extremely minimal, like one barrier surrounding the post and one barrier surrounding the section.
    • The section barrier may make the post barrier unnecessary. Likewise, a post-only design does not need a section barrier. Do not add barriers if they are not needed.
  • Barriers in custom fences and walls obstruct all movement, unlike the built in fences that block movement variously. See their tool tips on the Construction window for details.
  • Blueprints/Buildings folder contains the Fence .SoH files that are used for the built in styles. If they are used as custom fences and walls, they will not have the special movement rules of the built in fences and walls.
  • When adding a fence to a building design in the on line designer, the list will include designs in the exchange and in your gear.
  • Fences in the designer do not automatically divide themselves into section lengths. Each fence segment in a design creates a single section of fence. The Zoo by Haxus fences are long corner-to-corner sections that do not conform to terrain in between the posts. I will update the design when time permits.
  • Designer preview works with fences.
    • In the on line designer, custom fences will appear in the preview.
    • In the off line designer, custom fences will appear as a line of stakes in the preview, as if under construction. This is because the externally referenced custom fence/wall design is not available in the off line designer.
  • Fence designs can be built in all environments, depending on construction material.
    • Built in designs are made using specific construction materials.
    • Custom designs are made using the material selected on the Construction window.
  • Construction window Walls page was removed.
  • Sand bag wall button moved to Fence/Wall page.
  • Brick Wall and Stone Wall buttons were removed. They do not behave differently than custom walls so they will be published in the exchange instead. Removing them from the window enabled consolidation of walls and fences onto a single page.
  • Built in Brick Wall and Stone Wall designs still exist, for use in the designer, both on and off line.
Under Water Construction Bug
Buildings can not be built under water.

Fixed.

Fence Limits
Fences are not included in the world building limit. This vulnerability has been exploited. It must be fixed.

Fences now count toward the world building limit. The first 20 fences are free.
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#2
The past few weeks have been slow due to countless interruptions. Some were planned; most were unplanned, the worst kind. That made the considerable work on fences and walls seem to take forever.

Now that's finished, I'll be spending a lot of time on bug fixes and minor improvements.
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