Curriculum Navigator

The Curriculum Navigator is a TouchDesigner component built for exploring concise example networks and their accompanying documentation. Built on the principles of Operator Snippets, the Navigator is intended to allow the user fast access to written materials, alongside a practical TouchDesigner network. 

The dual pane interface features a rich text view on the left hand side powered by the webBrowser COMP (and Web Render TOP). This allows for seamless integration with examples and documentation authored on the web. The right hand side features an interactable network view of the example for fast access. 

Under the hood, the navigator loads TOX file examples on demand, making for a light-weight and always up-to-date set of examples that are pulled from the web. Most example TOX files are lightweight and fast to download. While the Navigator has been designed for use with the TouchDesigner Curriculum, its use can be freely extended and modified to meet the needs of instructors and students alike.

Using the Curriculum Navigator

The Navigator Component has a pulse button to open a floating window – this will open the split pane view of the Navigator as a floating network window in TouchDesigner similar to OP Snippets. The Navigator has a few settings available by clicking on the Gear Icon in the upper right of the Web View panel:

These Settings allow you to:

  • Set the webpage you’re viewing, 
  • Adjust the Web Render zoom level – conventional keyboard hot-keys
  • Enable audio
  • Reload the current page
  • Go back to the previous page

Curriculum Topic Pages

When viewing one of the Curriculum Topic pages in the Navigator, you’ll see additional buttons on the web page:

These buttons perform some TouchDesigner specific actions:

  • Load Example will download and load a tox in the right hand portion of the Navigator
  • TD Network will open a floating window of just the TouchDesigner example network
  • Web will open the current curriculum page in the user’s default browser

After loading an example, the right hand side of the navigator will be populated with a TouchDesigner network you can directly interact with:

This right pane has a few valuable features you can take advantage of:

  • The View Network button will center the viewer on the entire example – so you can see the complete example network at a glance.
  • The Floating Copy button will open the current example in a floating window.
  • The Panel button will hide the current example and display a summary of its contents – helpful if you’re an instructor who would like to hide the network during a presentation or classroom discussion
  • The Current Annotate drop down menu will allow you to jump to a specific Annotation COMP in the example network – ideal for situations where you might need to direct someone to look at a specific portion of the TouchDesigner Network.
  • Finally, the Save button will allow you to save a local copy of the TOX you’re currently viewing. A save dialog will open, allowing the user to select the location for the TOX to be saved. If you’ve made any changes to this TOX those changes will also be saved. This is especially useful if you’ve made additional notes or experiments you’d like to save.


Known Issues

  • Links set to open in new tab do not display in Navigator
  • webBrowser COMP interaction may cause page reloads – i.e. toggling audio on and off
  • Web and example view split may cause incorrect page breaks in web view
  • Clicking on the View Network button when an example is not loaded will display an empty TouchDesigner network.
    • Planned fix – disable header buttons when no network is loaded
  • Pulsing the Reset Navigator parameter may cause TouchDesigner to crash unexpectedly
  • Some Web Render TOP behavior is inconsistent between macOS and Windows
  • Web browser scroll bars may not display

Additional Notes

The Navigator was built with the intention of being used beyond just the TouchDesigner curriculum, and has an available specification for how you can use this tool with your own set of web based resources.

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