[Super Beginner] Touchdesigner’s “UnrealEngine Plug-in Samples” Explained — DAT & Real-time Communication

miwa_maroon
4 min readOct 30, 2021

DAT edition

Well, from the setup, we’ve gone through the TouchEngine Component, TOP, CHOP, instancing, and finally DAT!

You’re probably wondering when you’re going to use DAT, aren’t you?
That’s right, you will use it.
When do you use it?
It’s when you’re dealing with csv or txt data.
For Touchdesigner users, UE4 seems to be quite a hassle in this area.

For example, when you want to do data visualization, you’ll probably want to get the data in csv or something.
It’s much easier to process csv and txt data with DAT.
It’s also easy to sort and select the data itself!
Therefore, I use DAT! (Forcibly)

I’m also going to show you how to do the real-time communication between Touchdesigner and UE4.

We have a video for you.

The above video is a hands-on explanation of the details.

Extreme explanation of how to handle DAT.

In medium, I will explain the important things in an extreme way.

The final output should basically be in the form of a Table.

If you ask me why, it’s because you can’t get the values you’ll see later unless you use Table.

To get data, use Get Cell to specify the cell.

In order to retrieve data, you basically need to specify the index for each row and column.
At that time, we use the Get Cell

Basically, you can use this node to get the data.
By the way, if you specify index 17 for the row and index 18 for the column, this will be the complete set.
Krillin will be pissed, but
But let’s not joke about that.

The value type is a string called FString

All the data you can get from DAT will be a string called FString.
I’m sure you’re not familiar with FString, but the point is a string.
Even if you put the data in a cell of numbers, it is a string!
String absolute! is

Other tips

In addition to Get Cell, there are Get Row and Get Column for retrieving values.
These are nodes that allow you to get a row or column as an array of FString.
If you can’t find any nodes in this area, uncheck “context sensitive” in the upper right corner of the node search screen.
This is also explained in the video.

After extracting it by string, boil or bake it.

real-time communication

You’ve been waiting for it!
How do you do real-time communication between Touchdesigner and UE4?
The answer is to use Touch In / Touch Out.
The fact that Touchdesigner’s nodes run within UE4 means that if they are on the same PC

So from Touchdesigner’s Touch Out, we can receive from Touch In, which is embedded in UE4!

Implementation method

In this section, you can learn how to use TouchEngine from scratch.
So far, we’ve only looked at things that have actually been created, but it’s a different story when it comes to actually creating them.

But if you’ve seen it up to this point, you’ll probably know how to make it.
If you watch the second half of the video carefully, you will be able to make it without errors!

I’ll tell you how to make it in a few words.

On the UE4 side
Create a BluePrint with TouchEngineComponent’s Actor
Then, a Bluprint with TouchEngineComponent will be created.
Connect Get Output, Get TouchEngine OutPut, and GetCell.
Then make some minor adjustments and place this BluePrint in the world.
On the Touchdesigner side
Create some text, change it to a Table, and connect it to Touch Out.
Then create a separate base or container for tox and put Touch In here.
Put Touch In here.
Save it as a tox, and put this tox in the Contents folder of UE4.

All you have to do is set up as you have seen so far, and you are done!

It’s pretty extreme, but I’m writing this late at night, so please forgive me!
The video is well explained, so if there are any missing explanations, please go there!

Real world examples in UE4 and TouchEngine

This is a data visualization I made.
This is a data visualization that uses the UE4 plugin to import a csv file as the source of the data, and then manipulates the DAT.
I’m turning it into a graph and controlling the position of the sardines.

Touchdesigner and UE4 users can get along.

This UE4 plugin is an opportunity to bring these two applications closer together.
I hope that people who don’t know UE4 but do know Touchdesigner will be able to get interested in UE4 and make use of it in their daily work, VJ, work, etc.
I’m hoping in a small way.

Oh, I forgot to mention that miwa_maroon is not very good at either of these. I’m going to study more from now on, so please watch my growth through articles and youtube.

I hope you’ll keep an eye on my progress through articles and youtube.
So that’s the end of my long explanation of the UE4 sample! We only have the future!
I’m not going back, future!
So long!

--

--

miwa_maroon

I want to bring a smile to someone's life. Use Touchdesigner.