Above you can see the main window of ChaosPro. It consist of the following elements:
- Toolbar: The toolbar offers the most used and most important commands.
- Menubar: The menubar provides access to several settings and many windows.
- Palette: The palette icon in the toolbar will open a small window containing all predefined palettes.
- Parameter Collections: This dropdown combobox contains all parameter files which ChaosPro found at program start. A parameter file is a collection of many parameter sets (i.e. fractals), and thus you can store fractals in a single file.
- Parameters: This dropdown combobox displays all parameter sets (fractals) contained in the current parameter collection.
- Statusbar: The status bar will display a short descriptive text as you hilight menu items or move the mouse over some other graphical elements. Well, whenever I thought that the small labels are not intuitive enough in order to understand a function, I placed a longer text into the field in the statusbar. The second field in the statusbar displays the progress of the current fractal calculation, i.e. of the fractal whose window is activated. The next field then displays the fractal type of the active fractal and its zoom level.
As mentioned before, the toolbar offers access to the most used commands. While moving the mouse over a toolbar button a short descriptive text for that button will appear in the leftmost field of the status bar.
The toolbar can be configured using the system standard toolbar configuration dialog. To open this dialog double click onto an empty place of the toolbar (between the Redo-button and the first drop down combobox is a good place to click…one of the most common problems in accessing the configuration dialog is to find an empty place, btw…).
The toolbar has the following buttons (from left to right):
- New: This button opens a small window which lets you add new fractals which are initialized with default values.
- Open: Lets you open files. This command lets you open formula files, palette maps, parameter files and images (PNG images). Simply choose what you want, ChaosPro will look at the extension and call the appropriate routine.
Note: Most load file requesters in ChaosPro handle multi selection, i.e. you can load several maps, parameter files, etc at the same time by multiselecting them.
- Save: Saves the current fractal into a parameter file. After selecting this button you have to choose the file to save the parameters in. The file is scanned whether it is a valid parameter file and whether it already contains a fractal data set with the same name (in this case you can choose to replace the existing entry or simply to append the new parameter set to the file).
- Save All: This button lets you save the current project and all its fractals into a parameter file.
- Print: Prints the current fractal (if there is something to print…)
- Start: Starts the fractal calculation, opens a window, creates a thread, etc.
- Stop: Stops the fractal calculation (same as closing the fractal window)
- Delete: Deletes the fractal data structure (i.e. removes it from the drop down combo box and frees all memory associated with it)
- Resize: Opens the size window
- Undo/Redo: Undoes or redoes the last change.
The configuration dialog offers the following buttons:
- Pause and Resume: Stops and continues the fractal calculation.
- Default values: Restores the default values for the current type/ subtype combination.
- Clone: Clones the fractal, including buffers, layers, etc., simply creates a complete clone…