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Understanding relative versus absolute positioning

From: Wacom Essential Training

Video: Understanding relative versus absolute positioning

If you're new to Tablets, you are most likely use to interacting with a computer via the mouse. Switching from a mouse to the tablet is a bit like being in a foreign country, where drivers operate a vehicle from the opposite side that you're used to. It's extremely disorienting at first, and just like there is left- and right-sided driving, computer pointing devices can operate in either relative or absolute mode. In this video, we'll get to the bottom of all this. Or is it the top? Let's find out.

Understanding relative versus absolute positioning

If you're new to Tablets, you are most likely use to interacting with a computer via the mouse. Switching from a mouse to the tablet is a bit like being in a foreign country, where drivers operate a vehicle from the opposite side that you're used to. It's extremely disorienting at first, and just like there is left- and right-sided driving, computer pointing devices can operate in either relative or absolute mode. In this video, we'll get to the bottom of all this. Or is it the top? Let's find out.

Relative mode is useful in situations where the pointing device's movement is limited. Mouse movement is typically pick up, set down, drag, to reposition the screen cursor. In absolute positioning, the stylus tip and tablet are directly linked, or mapped. For example, the upper left of the tablet, corresponds to the upper left of the screen. Likewise, the lower right corner of the tablet corresponds to the lower right corner of the screen. This is exactly the same as a tablet device like the iPad, except that the screen and the tablet are in spatially different locations.

It takes practice to develop the eye-hand coordination to watch the screen and move the pen. Absolute positioning is superior for drawing and painting activity. Relative positioning is excellent for navigating menu structures. If you are a mouse user, then you've internalized the specific behavior to control the cursor, relative positioning. This learned behavior can take some practice to overcome when becoming proficient at absolute positioning, but it is definitely worth achieving. It's a small price to pay for expressing yourself via mark-making activities like painting and drawing.

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This video is part of

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Wacom Essential Training

44 video lessons · 26640 viewers

John Derry
Author

 
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  1. 4m 4s
    1. Welcome
      1m 46s
    2. Why use a tablet?
      1m 30s
    3. Exercise files
      48s
  2. 19m 18s
    1. Intro
      44s
    2. Drawing freehand
      2m 37s
    3. Tracing an existing image
      3m 17s
    4. Vector illustration
      4m 11s
    5. Using the tablet as a photo-retouching tool
      4m 28s
    6. Expressing yourself through painting
      4m 1s
  3. 12m 52s
    1. Intro
      25s
    2. A short history of the computing input devices
      2m 17s
    3. Understanding relative versus absolute positioning
      1m 47s
    4. Introducing the six axes of motion
      3m 15s
    5. An overview of the Wacom product line
      5m 8s
  4. 13m 52s
    1. Working with the Intuos: Symmetric and asymmetric placement
      2m 11s
    2. Using multi-touch on the Cintiq
      3m 41s
    3. Working with multiple displays
      3m 28s
    4. Going wireless
      4m 32s
  5. 36m 3s
    1. Intro
      27s
    2. Using the Wacom property pane
      2m 26s
    3. Setting up the tablet for handedness
      2m 20s
    4. Taking advantage of ExpressKeys
      5m 12s
    5. Utilizing the stylus side switch buttons
      5m 39s
    6. Using Precision mode
      3m 12s
    7. Improving application interaction with the radial menu
      6m 9s
    8. Using the Touch Ring
      5m 30s
    9. Saving multiple settings with the Wacom Tablet Utility
      5m 8s
  6. 17m 7s
    1. Intro
      25s
    2. The standard Grip Pen
      3m 40s
    3. The Art Pen
      3m 49s
    4. The Airbrush
      3m 30s
    5. Utilizing the eraser tip
      2m 23s
    6. Nibs: Tires for your stylus
      3m 20s
  7. 13m 0s
    1. An intro to tablet calisthenics
      44s
    2. Tablet calisthenics: Beginner exercises
      3m 16s
    3. Tablet calisthenics: Intermediate exercises
      3m 58s
    4. Tablet calisthenics: Advanced exercises
      2m 38s
    5. Tablet calisthenics: Master exercises
      2m 24s
  8. 12m 35s
    1. Setting up the Cintiq
      2m 57s
    2. Positioning the Cintiq for your working style
      2m 7s
    3. Optically aligning the Cintiq
      2m 44s
    4. Color calibrating your Cintiq display
      3m 32s
    5. Utilizing the hardware keys
      1m 15s
  9. 40s
    1. Next steps
      40s

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