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OrtwinS

Improving VAB/SPH part browsing with WASD keys

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Observations:

  • During construction we spend quite a bit of time (and concentration) simply aiming and clicking the part category tabs (top of the screen) and the arrow buttons to flip through pages (bottom), and then selecting the part we want (middle). Often we know approximately where the part we want is, but we still have to fiddle with the cursor up and down the screen to select those tiny tab- and page-buttons on our huge HD+ screens. Large amounts of mod-parts aren't really helping here ;).
  • The QWEASD keys are currently only in use to rotate objects in the VAB & SPH. When no part is held by the cursor these buttons are function-less.

Now connect the dots.

  • We can map flipping the part category tabs to the A and D keys
  • Map flipping through part pages (within the same category) to the W and S keys. (Or the QE keys if people find that more comfortable, I think I prefer WS)

You click the part you want (directly, without having to wave your cursor up and down to find the correct category and page), and the QWEASD keys function as before to rotate the part.

These functions will never conflict.

When you hold a part, you can't select a new one anyway, so no need to browse the tabs/pages.

When you browse the tabs/pages, you don't have to rotate anything since your looking for a new part to hold.

What do you think?

Edited by OrtwinS
formatting, grammar
  • Like 1

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This would be great, I'm sure it would really speed people up when they know what they're looking for.

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Excellent idea; it will certainly make the building process much quicker and easier. :D

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I feel like this is one of silly simple things people can't go without after using it for 5 minutes.

Additional reasoning: Most people already have their hand on the WASD region to control snap-on angles and symmetry. WASD is already associated with left-right forward-backward.

For me this idea is so intuitive I attempted to use it yesterday *facepalm*.

I wonder, is this something a mod could do (is there API that links with the part tabs and pages?).

We've seen many wanted functions or parts be covered through mods long before official implementation (can't blame them, there is SO MUCH to do, and for every implemented idea we think of 3 new variations :P).

I think I'll put a request in the add-on forum.

Request thread is HERE

Edited by OrtwinS
added add-on request link

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Maybe the 1-6 keys for for the categories, q/e for flipping pages within that category, and wasd for moving around the grid for that page?

edit addendum: and spacebar to select the highlighted part, snapping it directly to the cursor (which will probably over your workspace anyway).

Edited by SpaceGremlin

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Maybe the 1-6 keys for for the categories, q/e for flipping pages within that category, and wasd for moving around the grid for that page?

I really like the 1-6 numerical keys for categories!

Using WASD to select individual parts sounds to me a bit tedious and perhaps counter-intuitive. Though, I'd need to try it while building something big to know for sure.

How would you select the part in that case? Space-bar?

Edited by OrtwinS
typo

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