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In order to set up an animation like this, we need to take a few steps back and understand what a channel is. So I am just going to clear this out by going to the File menu and saying Close All, and I'll say Don't Save. So what is a channel? Well, every item that you have in your scene has channels. I am going to go to the Model tab right here and hold the Shift key and select the torus. Then we'll close this out, and then we'll press the A key to fit this to view. For most of the course, we've been just looking at our items and we've been looking at the Shader tree, but down at the bottom where we've always worked with Properties, right next to it is the Channels tab. And if you take a look at the torus, you open that up, you will see that here is the mesh and the mesh has a number of different channels associated with it.
Each of these channels we can animate, and you have animated some of those channels and probably didn't even know it. When we had gone in and changed some of the zoom factors for the camera, that was actually one of its channels. So that's all what a channel is. It's just an element of that model or that item. So a camera like this has its different channels down here: its Render channel, its Size channel, and so on. So when it comes to an object, we can look at the Center, the Shape, the Size. All those different channels can be animated in some way.
What we are going to do in this project is work with the Rotation and Position. So for instance, I am going to open the Model tab, I'm going to add a box, just hold the Shift key and click on it. I'll press W and I'll move this over. Spacebar turns off that tool, and I'll press the A key to fit. Zoom in a little bit. So here we've got a box and a cube, and very simply I am going to show you how these channels work. If I take the World Position channel for the cube and I drag it in here, I now have this item set up in order to create more of an animation. What can I do with this? Well, I am going to tell model I want to work with the World Position, and when this World Position does something, such as move, we move the position, I want it to affect this torus.
So let's take the Rotation on of those channels. We'll roll back up. We are going to add Rotation for the torus, and let's just say we rotate on the X. Now, I can't really just drop this together. I can't put this together, because this is a network, and what we are doing is we are saying, when the World Position changes, I wanted to affect the Rotation. World Position of the Cube affects the rotation of the torus. So that's where a modifier comes in, and I can click this and add something like Revolve, Intersect, Dynamic Parent, and so on.
There are quite a few things in here that can really get very deep. But on a simple level, let's just take this here and we what happens. I get an error saying, not compatible. Okay, so we'll add a modifier, we'll come down to Other, and we'll choose Revolve. This is a math function that will allow me to control one item to another. So I am going to take the World Position and now you see that this link is green, meaning it can link right up; it is compatible. And I am going to take the Angle Output and put it to the Rotation, and notice that it automatically changes.
If I select the Cube, and then I press W for Move, when I move the position, that torus changes. It's that simple. I've taken the World Position channels for the Cube, I've used a Revolve--which is just a modifier, and these are part of the program-- and when we put that Modifier in, we are telling the position to activate the Revolve Math function and take the output of that to drive the rotation of this torus. So that's how we are going to set up the car. Very simple.
In the next video, I am going to show you some other principles that are very important, so that the object actually rotates properly. There is a number of different things you can do with pivots and centers. We covered them a little earlier in the course, but in the next project, we are actually going to take these a little bit further, so that your wheels rotate properly. This process is going to work for just about anything you set up, whether it's architecture, simple animations or something more complex, such as the schematic.
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