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iMOD User Manual version 5.2 (html)


7.5Movie Tool

WHY?
The Movie Tool is an instrument that can be used to create an playable movie out of a sequence of images created from 2D plot, e.g. contour maps of draw downs in time can be collected into a single *.AVI file to be displayed in a movie player. These movies can illustrate in a dynamical way how groundwater responds to measures.

WHAT?
Any combination of images, such as contour lines, grid and overlay can be used to create a movie file. These movie files are *.AVI and can be played with an existing and installed movie player.

HOW?
Select the option Toolbox from the main menu and then choose the option Movie Tool, from there a option exists to create a movie via the option Create a New Movie … and to display and start the movie via the option Play an Existing Movie ….

Known issues
One of the options of the Movie Tool is to display an *.AVI file. iMOD will open the file in the preferred player referred to in the preference file (*.PRF), a new window pops up. The experience: on some machines iMOD will stagnate when trying to display the *.AVI file. The cause: iMOD has started the player, however it is running in the background. The cure: open the Windows Task Manager to close the process of the viewer and iMOD is available again. To watch the *.AVI file, open it outside iMOD with your preferred player.


7.5.1Create a New Movie

The Create a New Movie Tool allows you to create an AVI from a selected set of plots with time independent and time dependent IDF files. iMOD will construct these files by collecting all data from the other related time-dependent IDF-files. Related time-dependent IDF-files have identical names but have a different date string. A date string is an eight digit continuous number, e.g. 20091231 meaning the 31\({}^{th}\) of December 2009. It is not necessary to load all related time-dependent IDF-files in the iMOD Manager. At least one is sufficient to construct the entire time series. If a multiply set of IDF files is selected, each of them is used to load all time-dependent files. In the end all unique time steps will be used to generate images and IDF files will be re-used whenever they do not coincide with the current time step.

Example of IDF-files (A,B and/or C) available in the iMOD Manager prior to the start of the Create a New Movie Tool:

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To start the Create a New Movie window, select the option Toolbox from the main menu, choose Movie Tool and then choose Create a New Movie …. Alternatively, you can click the Create a New Movie button (  pictures/h5/movie.png ) at the main toolbar. In both cases, you should select at least one IDF-file in the iMOD Manager that has a date notation in its name. This is a continuous number with eight-digits (yyyymmdd), e.g. 19940114 or fourteen-digits (yyyymmddhhmmss), e.g. 20121228123010. In the first case, it represents the 14\({}^{\rm th}\) of January, 1994, for the second case is represents the 28\(^{\rm th}\) of December 2012 at 12 hours, 30 minutes and 10 seconds. If iMOD can not find such a date notation somewhere in the filename (in at least one of the selected IDF-files), the following window will appear and the Create a New Movie Tool will not start.

Warning window:

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If a proper IDF-file(s) has been selected in theiMOD Manager, the following window will appear.

Available Dates window:

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Use ALL available dates (432-files)

Select this option whenever you want to create an movie file for the entire time window that iMOD found.

Select PART of all available dates

Select this option to specify a different time window. This may gain processing time as less files need to be opened.

From:

Enter the start date of the time window. On default it displays the earliest date of the data.

To:

Enter the end data of the time window. On default it displays the latest date of the data.

Frequency of input used for time series

Select this option to decrease the number of dates used, e.g. by entering the value 2 iMOD will skip each second available date of the time series.

Select/Enter Output folder:

Select an existing output folder in which the individual images will be saved that are used to create a movie file (AVI) out of it. iMOD lists all the available folders in the user folder {IMOD_USER \MOVIE}. If an existing folder is selected, iMOD will ask for confirmation to delete its entire content before proceeding. It is also possible to enter a non-existing folder by typing in the name of the new folder.

Framerate

Enter the framerate of the movie in frames per seconds. Suppose iMOD generates a movie for 48 images (frames) and the framerate of the movie is 24 frame per seconds, the Duration of the movie will be 2 seconds.

Duration

Enter the duration of the movie in seconds. Suppose iMOD generates a movie for 48 images (frames) and the duration of the movie need to be 4 seconds, the framerate will be 12 frames per seconds. The higher the framerate the faster the consecutive images will appear.

File Format

Choose one of the following file formats:

  • • Bitmap (*.BMP);

  • • Portable Network Graphics (*.PNG);

  • • ZSoft PC Paintbrush (*.PCX);

  • • JPEG image (*.JPG).

Be aware that the BMP file format is not compressed and gives a more detailed quality, it consumes more disc-space per image, approximately 7.0Mb. Instead, PCX or even better JPG file formats can be used that consume significantly less disc-space per image, approximately 0.1Mb. For each image, a separate file is create in the selected Output Folder, e.g. IMAGE001.JPG. Each file has a time stamp as well.

Example of one of the consecutive images

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OK

Click this button to start the Create a New Movie Tool for the selected time window. The Available Dates window will close. iMOD will generate a question first to confirm the generation of the consecutive images.

Question for confirmation of the generation of consecutive images

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Enduring the process of generating these consecutive images, the progress is displayed in the following window.

Progress window in the process of generating consecutive images

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The process cannot be stopped, but will if there might be an error while saving an image to disc, e.g. whenever the disc-space runs out. After the process, iMOD asks to start the Play an Existing Movie Tool to display the images, see section 7.5.2.

Help …

Click this button to start the iMOD Help Functionality.

Cancel

Click this button to close the Available Dates window; the Timeseries Tool will not start.

Note: You should select at least one IDF with date information in its filename, other IDF-files that are selected without a date information, will be displayed as time-constant. In this way you can easily make a combination with time-variant information (e.g. drawdown) and time-invariant information (e.g. landuse).


7.5.2Play an Existing Movie

Start the Play Existing Movie Files window by selecting the option Toolbox from the main menu, choose Movie Tool and then choose Play Existing Movie Files ….

Play Existing Movie Files window:

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Existing Folders:

Select one of the existing folders in the {IMOD_USER \MOVIE} folder.

File Format:

Select one of the existing file formats for display purposes. Choose one of the following file formats:
  • • Bitmap (*.BMP);

  • • Portable Network Graphics (*.PNG);

  • • ZSoft PC Paintbrush (*.PCX);

  • • JPEG image (*.JPG);

  • • AVI Audio Video Interleave (*.AVI).

Existing Files:

Select one of the existing files to display them in the graphical frame on the right. This is operational as long as one of the following file formates are selected: BMP, PNG, PCX, JPG are selected.

Play Movie …

Click this button to start a movie player, such as FFPLAY or VLCPLAYER. This option is available whenever one of this players are referred to in the PRF-file, see section 9.1 and whenever the AVI file format is selected.

Example of the VLCPLAYER

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Help…

Click this button to start the HELP functionality

Close

Click this button to close the Play Existing Movie Files window