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Practical Maya Programming with Python Paperback – 24 Jun 2014


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Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Packt Publishing (24 Jun. 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1849694729
  • ISBN-13: 978-1849694728
  • Product Dimensions: 19 x 2 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 398,192 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Robert Galanakis

Robert Galanakis is a technical artist cum programmer who has worked in various areas of game development. He is the Technical Director of EVE Online at CCP Games, Iceland, where he focuses on Python, Lean, and Agile training and evangelism. In 2008, Rob founded tech-artists.org, which is the largest and the most active community focused on tech art on the Internet. He has spoken at Game Developers Conference several times and has also written many articles about tools, pipelines, and culture. His blog can be found at www.robg3d.com. He lives in Reykjavík, Iceland, with his wife Casady and their son Marcus.


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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

By W Boudville on 9 Aug. 2014
Format: Paperback
There is a very interesting and insightful comment made in the book about .ui files. These were first used in Maya for Qt Designer, which makes WYSIWIG [what you see is what you get] for constructing GUIs. This was in itself an IDE or GUI, where via various buttons and menus, you could visually make a given interface for your needs. Then by saving into a .ui file and bringing it into Python, you got your GUI. Wow! This approach has been followed in other graphical contexts. Notably in circuit and chip design. In the 80s, we went from a text file to define a circuit in SPICE to a WYSIWIG and far simpler, faster, less error prone method. A big boost in productivity. In general, you would indeed expect this in other fields.

But the book argues otherwise for Maya and Python. It says WYSISWIG generated code is 'poorly designed from a technical and aesthetic standpoint'. The code is bloated. Objects in it are auto-named, which might not be as semantically useful. And unnecessary attributes are inserted into the code. This makes sense, so far. The text goes on to suggest that using Python and Qt means you can drop a lot of boilerplate. The claim is that with enough experience on your part, you can manually write better, faster GUI code. So much so that the book recommends never to use Qt Designer for production code. Perhaps in part this is due to Python being a scripting language? So that the interpreter has less chance to optimise the source code, compared to a compiler.

Or maybe that the graphics in a GUI layout for Maya applications are often simpler than the cases of circuit and chip design. There, the complexity of the connections between circuit elements can be overwhelming. And today's circuits often have thousands of elements.
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Format: Paperback
Book is recommendable if you are new to programming in Python, focused from the same beginning on applying Python programming concepts into Maya itself. First chapters go through concepts as using reusable code, decorators and generators, to UI programming with PyQT in Maya, etc. Last chapters are the most interesting ones if you are used to develop in python for some other graphics application (Blender in my case).

Examples are simple and easy to understand, but focused on real-world concepts and solutions; there are some sections where the author offer alternative approaches to questions you could have your own (ie how to retrieve usage statistics from your pluing once installed by a customer).

A truly nice reading
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Format: Paperback
Although I'm still in the process of reading this book I like to say that, as person who is new to python and tried, previously, several other books and video tutorial, the flow of information is very smooth and in progressive order. So for person like me, who is new to Python, the book is an ideal reading, easy to understand and very well applicable to real world scenarios.
Defiantly this book deserves the reader attention. I'm continuing reading it as it managed to engage me quite a lot. And I hope by teh time I reach the end, I'l be a Python master.
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By Tijana on 16 Feb. 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am very happy with my purchase! It arrived fast and the book was in super good packed! Thanks a lot!
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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful By EMJAY on 31 Mar. 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this book for two reasons. One: Rob Galanakis is, as has been said, a badass when it comes to this type of instruction. 2: Rob Galanakis is a badass at this type of instruction.

Seriously though, Rob has been doing this for years and has some of the most respected information in the industry and I have personally learnt a lot from the web based examples and information he has given away freely. If he has put his knowledge and experience in a book, then any aspiring Maya TD would do well to have this in their arsenal. Only one chapter in and loving it. Clear and concise, just as a TD should be.
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