Installation the SofaPython plugin
First, you need to have the python-2.7 library installed. After installing and compiling SOFA, you have to:
- re-run the cmake-gui
- and activate the SOFA-PLUGIN_SOFAPYTHON option, and configure,
- Finally, recompile SOFA.
Test the plugin using examples
Once you activated the SofaPython plugin, you can test the compilation using the examples available in the folder of SofaPython/examples/. For example, start the fontain.scn scene:
Write your own python !
In your scene, if you want to use Python in one of your scene (fontain.scn), you need:
- in the first place add the plugin in the scene using the RequiredPlugin,
- and define a PythonScriptController in the scene graph.
Most of the time, this PythonScriptController is placed inside the root node as illustrated in the example “fontain.scn” below:
The core of this plugin is the Sofa Python module available to python scripts from within the SofaPython components (they are not available outside Sofa environment, in the command-line python binary for example). ** style=“text-decoration: underline;”>Any python script** (fontain.py) embedded in SOFA should include the following line if it wants to interact with the SOFA framework:
SofaPython provides several module methods, for general purpose (not linked to a particular node or component). For example:
- createGraph(): allows to access the time at which the graph is created,
- reset(): when the scene is reset
- onKeyPressed(): allows to recover any user interaction, for example with the keyboard,
- and many other functions.
The following small example gives an idea on the various possibilities of the sofa python plugin. In any of the module methods (presented above), you can:
have access to a node (here in the function initGraph):
def initGraph(self,node): print 'the name of the node is'+node.name self.root = node
interactively create new components with specific parameters in the node:
def initGraph(self,node): print 'the name of the node is'+node.name self.root = node myLoader = self.root.createObject('CGLinearSolver',iterations=25,tolerance=1.0e-9,threshold=1.0e-9)
even access an existing component (named ‘MecaObject’) in the node:
def initGraph(self,node): print 'the name of the node is'+node.name self.root = node self.myMecaObject = node.getObject('MecaObject')
and access/modify its properties:
def initGraph(self,node): print 'the name of the node is'+node.name self.root = node self.myMecaObject = node.getObject('MecaObject') # Access data print 'my positions are : '+self.myMecaObject.findData('position').value # Modify data self.myMecaObject.findData('position').value=str(x)+' '+str(y)+' '+str(z)+' 0 0 0 1'
You see ! Python is unlimited !!
Translate an existing scene in a python script
In the Python plugin in SOFA, you will find an executable ./scn2python.py which allows to translate an existing scene (e.g. myExample.scn) into a SOFA python scene (e.g. myExamplePython.py). This is very useful since it generates a script with ALL possible functions that you can use in SOFA such as init(), handleEvent(), onKeyPressed() an so on. Optional arguments:
-h, --help show this help message and exit -n [N] Node to replace by python script, if equals None the complete scene is replaced by a python script (default: None) -o [O [O ...]] Filename(s) of the transformed scene(s), if equals None the script generates the output filename(s) by adding Python to the input filenames (default: None) -s Output .scn and .py file (default: 0)
When specifying -s or by specifying the node to replace in the command line, you will generate a scene (e.g. myExamplePython.scn) which includes a PythonScriptController in the scene. This controller then uses the information of the created script (e.g. myExamplePython.py) to define the scene, its components, etc. . Thus the xml and/or the php representation of a scene can be combined with a python scene. To improve the legibility of the scene and to allow python to access all components, the usage via the xml scene should only be considered when necessary.
Python scenes with command line arguments
It might be interesting to have a scene, that only changes considering a few parameters. An example is a convergence analysis, where the scene stays in general the same, but the input mesh changes. In order to allow for such a control from the command line, our python module uses an additional command line parameter: arguments given after –argv are then one of the arguments of the init function for the class of a scene. For the access in all member functions this argument can be saved as a global variable, similar to
class caduceus (Sofa.PythonScriptController): def __init__(self, node, commandLineArguments) : self.commandLineArguments = commandLineArguments
Even if a command line argument is a number, it will be represented as a string in the commandLineArguments. In order to transform a string to a number it can be combined with ast.literal_eval.
The scn2python.py script automatically introduces this variable. That means, for a concrete example, you can transform the standard Sofa scene to a python scene using
Then, when launching the scene with
./runSofa examples/Demos/caduceusPython.py --argv "VariableName" valueNumber valueString
one can access the command line arguments in the python scene with
variableName = self.commandLineArguments valueNumber = ast.literal_eval(self.commandLineArguments) valueString = self.commandLineArguments
while using ast.literal_eval needs the import ast.
More informations about the plugin itself can be found in sofa/applications/plugins/SofaPython/doc/SofaPython.pdf.
Last modified: 20 January 2020