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Chapter 13. Making Advanced Connections > Understanding Node Connections

Understanding Node Connections

The two easiest and most common ways to understand node connections—by applying them in a practical way to solve a common problem—involve using straight connections in the Connection Editor and creating animation curve-driven connections using the Set-Driven Key window.

Set-driven keys is a truly wonderful feature of Maya. A set-driven key enables you to create your own relationship between two attributes without writing any expressions or hooking up any complex node networks; the Set-Driven Key window pretty much does all this for you. The basic idea to keep in mind before you begin the exercises in this chapter is that by creating node connections, your end goal is simply to cause one attribute to modify the value of another attribute (using some sort of defined relationship). A set-driven key lets you do just that. As an example, when this attribute is set to, say, 5, you can tell it that you want this other attribute to be set to –15, but as the first attribute changes back to 0, you want the second attribute to also smoothly go back to 0. This is a simple example, but hopefully it begins to open up the idea of controlling attributes and using set-driven key relationships to do so.


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