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Mattie

Measuring and Line Length

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Hello,

I'm new to Affinity (trying to learn it so I can leave my Illustrator subscription). I use vector software to create sewing patterns, so length and measurement are really crucial features for me. If it matters, I'm using the desktop Mac version.

I'm having trouble finding any way of measuring things that isn't strictly vertical or horizontal. Illuatrator tells you the length of a line or curve a couple ways (pic below). 

Does Affinity tell me this information somewhere that I haven't found yet?  I know the box in the bottom right has H and W values, but that is only helpful for straight lines that are vertical or horizontal. Please don't tell me I have to rotate every line to horizontal to measure it...

Thank you for your assistance!

Draw Over Photo1540822581842.png

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Wish I had known before I spent money on this program.

Take heart, Mattie. You made a good purchase. The program has strong underpinnings, but is still under development. The request for display of path length (and area and other things) has been made several times. I'm just a user like you, but I'm confident this and related functionality will be forthcoming.

If it's any consolation, I "was there" when Illustrator finally got around to displaying path length (and other specs, like number of nodes, etc, etc.), which its competitors already provided. Given the age of the program, it wasn't that long ago. Prior to that, that information was buried in a "secret" developer's dialog that could be invoked if one knew the undocumented keyboard shortcut to invoke it. As users found out about it, they demanded visibility of such info in the normal interface. That's how it finally got rather crudely tacked onto, of all places, the Document Info palette. (Not exactly an intuitive place to look for path details.) I dare say many Illustrator users are still not even aware of it.

But you are right, it is essential to accurate drawing.

JET

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19 hours ago, Mattie said:

Wish I had known before I spent money on this program :(

I guess you also didn’t know that there’s a 10-day trial: https://affin.co/designertrial


Alfred online2long.gif
Affinity Designer/Photo/Publisher 1.7.1.404 • Windows 10 Home (4th gen Core i3 CPU)
Affinity Photo for iPad 1.7.1.143 • Designer for iPad 1.7.1.1 • iOS 12.4 (iPad Air 2)

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Yep still waiting on this feature as well. Has been documented elsewhere here. Although there is a cumbersome workaround, it goes to show that the software is capable of measuring paths and just requires a bit of front-end work to show the users. It's the only feature keeping me from recommending AD to others... 

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Hello!
Like Mattie, I also make sewing patterns in Illustrator, and his reference picture (above) displaying the Document Info > Objects is what I use all the time.
I am ready to jump into Affinity Designer but it is not realistic without proper measurement tools. Real-time curve measuring would be so good.
I really hope they will be added to AD in the near future. 

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Line length, line angle, & line position, should all be available together. To take a graphics program, from a consumer level toy for making birthday cards, to a professional level, such information and more (area) should be available for every polygon and geometric type shape. For example every polygon should have the option to display its center with crosshairs and to show its basic subdivisions. So a hexagon would be able to show its subdivisions into 6 similar triangles. There is nothing difficult, about this for a computer, or in terms of code. Drawing programs back in the 1990s could do this. There was one dialog box for creating multisided polygons till they became indistinguishable from circles, with or without subdivisions. Not a dumbed down display of 10-12 "favorites.

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It also needs to be clear how changing stroke width size, effects both the inside and outside dimensions of a shape, and the resulting size of the group when shapes are snapped together. As when creating a tiling of squares, creating a chess board design for example.

Perhaps this is already customizable?

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Just wanting to add my voice to those requesting a measurement feature for lines/curves.

At the moment, I am using a workaround of rotating my design to zero rotation, drawing a horizontal line from point-to-point, looking at the Width measure reported in the Transform window, then deleting the superfluous line and rotating the design back to it's original orientation.

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16 hours ago, Martin Conrad said:

Just wanting to add my voice to those requesting a measurement feature for lines/curves.

At the moment, I am using a workaround of rotating my design to zero rotation, drawing a horizontal line from point-to-point, looking at the Width measure reported in the Transform window, then deleting the superfluous line and rotating the design back to it's original orientation.

Pretty much what I am doing. Very inefficient though. But doesn’t work on curves...

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On 10/30/2018 at 3:39 AM, MEB said:

Hi Mattie,
Welcome to Affinity Forums :)
Currently Affinity Designer doesn't provide this info anywhere. I'm moving this thread to the Feature Requests section.

Hi MEB,

Any update as to whether this is in the pipeline? I would think that AD is doing all the measurements in the background it just needs to be displayed somewhere in the UI?

It's disappointing that this feature has been requested for a couple of years now. It is a crucial tool in many people's workflows that keeps them chained to Adobe.

Love the product and just want it to be the best! Thanks for any updates!

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Would the following work?

  1. Isolate the target line as a separate layer.
  2. Hide all the other layers.
  3. Export this layer as an svg file.
  4. Use a script that will parse the svg path directive to calculate the length of the path.

I know this last step may be a stalling point, but the script needs only be written once. I'm sure that I, or one of the other members here could write such a script for you.

Edit: I might have exceeded my capabilities here. If your line comprises a series of straight segments, it will export as a path comprising these straight segments. It would be easy to calculate the total length of the path. If is comprised of curved segments, then the path directive would include curve elements, which would be possible, but more difficult  to calculate a length for.

Example: a single straight segment produces the following svg path:

    <path d="M 495.891, 916.137 L 1451.25, 498.692" style="fill:none;stroke:black;stroke-width:1px;"/>

Three straight segments produces:

   <path d="M 495.891, 916.137 L 798.741, 857.875 L 1111.26,547.846 L 1451.25,498.692" style="fill:none;stroke:black;stroke-width:1px;"/>

A simple curve between two points produces:

    <path d="M 495. 891, 916.137 C 875.98,  552.857  875.046, 553.791  1451.25, 498.692" style="fill:none;stroke:black;stroke-width:1px;"/>

A more complex curve based on the three straight segments produces:

    <path d="M 495. 891,916.137 C 682.722,  737.568  844.731, 851.52  961.236, 799.041 C 1081.75,744. 757 1158.28,526. 707 1451.25,498.692" style="fill:none;stroke:black;stroke-width:1px;"/>

The 'M' means moveto, the 'L' means lineto and the 'C' means a Cubic Bezier curve. I have added a few spaces above to clarify the component numbers.

I have just looked up how to measure the length of a cubic Bezier curve, and the answer seems to be: 'with great difficulty'. There do seem to be approximations which might suit your needs.
 

John


Windows 10, Affinity Photo 1.7 and Designer 1.7, (mainly Photo), now ex-Adobe CC

CPU: AMD A6-3670. RAM: 16 GB DDR3 @ 666MHz, Graphics: 2047MB NVIDIA GeForce GT 630

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Thanks for the reply John!

I require these measurements similar to the OP. Which means we need to see accurate measurements as we adjust many complex paths on the screen. So the 4 steps you mention above would turn into a high multiple of 4 as we design, export, script, adjust, export, script, adjust etc...

I didn't mean to make too much work for anyone. I just assumed(maybe incorrectly) the software needs to do these calculations in its code anyway. So would it be too difficult to display these measurements to us in the GUI like AI does?

Thanks

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