User Manual

Critical Information

This section outlines the key information you will need to work with VRMLmagic. If you only read one section of this User manual make it this one.

Saving & Restoring

Saving Your Work

We recommend you save your work regularly, as VRMLMagic does NOT undertake any automatic saving you must actively save your project to ensure you do not lose any data.

Another important note in regards to saving your work is that VRMLmagic can output two types of information, Worlds and Images, it is important to know that images are simply graphics and YOU CANNOT load an image back into VRMLmagic and get back your original world. Hence you must always save the world as a VRML file to enable you to bring it back. The way to best think of this is to see the VRML file as the main working item and simply use images as one off outputs.

Keep files Together

A VRML world is more than just the .wrl file. In fact most worlds will have a primary .wrl file and a series of linked files containing additional data (such as textures, sounds etc.). To copy/move a VRML world you need to move both the .wrl file and the other linked files.

To make managing these files simpler VRMLmagic copies the necessary files (eg. sounds, images etc) into the same directory as the saved World file (it also uses relative paths internally to access these files). The best way to keep all of the items relating to one world together in an easily manageable group is to make a directory/folder for just this world and save into that folder. This allows you to easily move the whole folder (either to the WWW or elsewhere) and have the links all work perfectly.

Working with Worlds

VRMLmagic allows you to build, save and preview worlds from within its development environment. However it will only allow you to work with one active world at any time. This means that when you load a new world it closes the old world. If while working on one world you wish to load another, you must save the first world (when you choose load world it will ask if you wish to save existing one) otherwise it will be closed and any changes that you have made will be lost. The general principle here is to think of VRMLmagic as a one project at a time tool.

General Working Setup

With the exception of interactively positioning and orienting items in the 3D environment, most of the actions you can achieve are available through the menu system.

General Approach to Building a World

Previewing Outputs

VRMLmagic outputs a VRML world, this world can be viewed in webbrowsers (via a VRML plugin). VRMLmagic provides menu options to preview in the most common browsers (use menu File - Preview in browsername), making it easy for you to test your world without leaving the VRMLmagic application. However if you wish to preview in another browser you can easily save your world and then use the browser to open the resulting.wrl file. If you are publishing on the WWW we recommend testing on a range of browsers and plugins to ensure your world works as desired.

User Manual