Maya Annoyances

From cgwiki

playblast name should be smarter

LOGGED. if you playblast and want to keep the file, it tries to pickup the name of the scene. That's good. unfortunately, it doesn't pickup the name if you keep saving and changing the filename; its only the name of the scene from the last file-open. That's bad. A little update button would be good.

accidentally moving your render camera

LOGGED. Nuke has the right answer here; you can look through any camera you want, but as soon as you move the view (especially if you scrollwheel zoom), you're immediately dropped back to the persp camera, any proper cameras you've created aren't touched.

If you DO want to move the render camera, you click the 'yes, I want to move the camera button' (called lock-camera-to-viewport I think), and then you keyframe away. Once your'e done, you turn that button off, and your camera is safe. The default state is for that button to be disabled, which is generally what you want.


LOGGED. can't believe this is still a rats nest. vray has it right; split refractive away from transparency. 99% of the time we want cutoff, like alpha. vray offers a cutoff alpha attribute on its vray material node, its ideal. maya still does stupid things where you need to take the alpha of a texture, invert it, and pipe it seperately to r/g/b of transparency. equally annoying is that none of the viewport modes display this properly. not standard viewport, nor high quality, nor viewport2.0. games have been able to deal with this for 20 years, why can't maya?

viewport 2.0 doesn't support lots of things

maya 2015 has had a big update for VP2, lets see how it is... can't disable selection highlighting, procedural textures don't display properly (eg fractals into ramps)

resolution parameter on shaders not exposed by default

NOT LOGGED. if you need to go more than 256, you need to set it through python/mel. sometimes its exposed, sometimes its not. its random and weird.

save render layers as text file, make them modular

NOT LOGGED. It's crazy that they're so brittle and not easily templated or swapped between scenes. if they could be dumped to a text file with a syntax like AL's render submission script, it'd make reuse so much easier, and would help reduce the fear that people always have when using render layers in production.

rename layer dialog should confirm when enter is pressed

LOGGED. annoying that you have to click the save button. logged as a SAT already here

rename layer dialog should auto-replace invalid chars with underscores

the warning it gives is stupid stupid stupid. don't tell me what i'm doing wrong, just fix it.

every other renaming thing in maya just implicitly replaces bad things with underscores, do the same here.

create project folders in existing project

NOT LOGGED, If you've already defined a project, but haven't made default folders yet, there's no easy way to do it. I'm sure there's scripts around, but this shouldn't be necessary.

project warning on scene load

NOT LOGGED. Just about every company I've worked at has this, it should be default in maya. When you load a scene, it warns you 'hey, the scene you've loaded appears to belong to a different project, do you want to switch to that project?' Again, there are probably scripts to do this, but it should be default behavior.

ability to rename or skip masterlayer name

NOT LOGGED. If I'm rendering a beauty and other passes, I don't want my beauty layer named 'masterLayer', I should be able to rename it.

render names and context aware file/path separators

NOT LOGGED. If I define my render path as


I'd get folders with useless underscores and images with double underscores if I haven't defined any layers yet. If I happen to use a render which supports render elements/aov's, there might be an extra <element> or <aov> token, I'd get triple underscores.

A solution would be to allow us to define puncuation within the tag, eg


That way, the underscore is only added if the layer token is used, otherwise its ignored.

attribute spreadsheet option to list all possible attributes

NOT LOGGED Often I'll go to use the attribute spreadsheet to edit some esoteric vray or whatever value on many objects, only to find it not listed. There should be an option to list all attributes, regardless of hidden/locked/visible state.

connection editor

How has this not changed since maya v2? Grr.

connection editor filters

LOGGED. It needs rapid filter boxes at the top of each column similar to the hypershade filter/attribute spreadsheet for both source and destination. connectionEditorPlus is a good template. AND IT WAS MADE IN TWO THOUSAND GODDAMN SIX. Logged as 'fixed', but it clearly isn't.

connection editor presets

NOT LOGGED. if i'm doing shading connections, and I'm often connecting X to Y, I should be able to shift-select those attribute names (or even types?) and save it as a filter

connection editor sorting

NOT LOGGED. sort by type, or alphabetically, or hidden/visible, or already connected

connection editor best guess

NOT LOGGED. no doubt this will infuriate, but couldn't hurt to try. SOuP's connection utility often has a pretty good guess.

node editor

node editor is a mess, check if there's an option to graph on request

NOT LOGGED. If this is gonna be our future, then fix the graphing in here, its horrible. If you ignore it for a bit, make stuff in other windows then come back to it, its made a total mess. Its not persistent, its a dogs breakfast. New nodes should at least try and place themselves in free space, it should remember graph layouts as much as possible, make it better damnit.

node editor tab create option like hypershade, for all nodes

NOT LOGGED. If we're meant to be making and editing nodes and node connections, then let us create nodes here. It's dumb to force us to have both hypershade open to create nodes, and the node editor to connect them.

node editor connection editor popup with a single column is weird

NOT LOGGED. I still don't quite understand the behavior when the node editor pops up half of the connection editor sometimes, for output first, then the other. Fix this.

can't drop nodes onto noodles and have them autoconnect

NOT LOGGED. this is one of the best features of nuke, it really should do that it in maya.

picking up a noodle endpoint and rewiring isn't consistent

NOT LOGGED. Easier to explain with names. I have nodes A and C which are connected (A is source, C is destination), I want to insert B between them.

  1. Take the noodle end which is an input to C, drag it to the input of B. This pops up the one-sided connection editor, select, ok. Clunky.
  2. Take the noodle start which is an output of A, drag it to the output of B, this does an in-place context menu, select, done. Much neater.

Neater still would be for it to just recognise the matching types and connected, or a hover menu of possible connections similar to Tom's work on his browser/unity based node editor: