Sparrow
(by DIG.TOOLS)
Sparrow is a Rhino 3D plugin delivering productivity boost by enhancing middle mouse button functionality.
$55
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Sparrow is a Rhino 3D plugin delivering productivity boost by enhancing middle mouse button functionality
and making 3D views manipulation more intuitive. It works standalone or inside other commands.
If you do a lot of modeling in Rhino, especially directly in 3D views, Sparrow's instant camera focus will be a major productivity improvement.

Main enhancement modes:

  • MMB Click ] : instantly focus the view on the specific area of the object under cursor
  • MMB Hold ] : intuitive view manipulation based on point under cursor (pivot)
  • Key Combos + MMB Click ] : customizable macro or Sparrow-specific function assignments for quick access with Ctrl, Alt, Shift and other key combinations

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SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS:
Rhino 6 SR14 or later (Windows version only) is required to run Sparrow. 
INSTALLATION AND LICENSING:
Download and run the plugin installer. Once ready, "Sparrow_Settings" command becomes available.
Run it and enable Sparrow from the top of the popup menu - it will take over the control of MMB functions.
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TRIAL version is fully functional, but limited to 30 MMB-clicks per Rhino session.
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SPARRROW MODES:

MMB-Click Mode:
Designed to focus the camera and view rotation center precisely on the point on any object under cursor. Two view change methods are available: Pan (default, moves the camera and target) and LookAround (rotates and adjusts target distance, camera stays in place). Opposite mode will be used when Shift+MMB-Clicking. Please note, this functionality can be used while other Rhino command is running allowing to quickly re-focus the view anytime. This also allows to conveniently scrollwheel zoom instantly after refocusing, without running into a problem of zoom “getting stuck” due to camera-target distance issue. Using this mode makes navigating any model very quick and intuitive.

Note: locked objects will not be detected by MMB-Click

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MMB-Hold Mode:

Sparrow enters this mode when MMB is pressed and held (default time is 0.2 s) or when cursor moves while MMB is down. Once in this mode, a dot object marking the pivot point is displayed and will be used as a focus point of any view manipulations. Sparrow will stay in this mode until MMB is released.
 

Available actions in this mode: 

  • Spin around pivot (default when moving the mouse)
  • LookAround (with Shift down)
  • Pan (with Space down)
  • ZoomPivot (with Ctrl down) - change lens length and target position to keep pivot point in exact same spot in the viewport
  • ZoomTarget (with Ctrl + Space down) - standard ZoomLens
  • DollyZoomPivot (with Ctrl+Shift down). unlike Rhino’s standard DollyZoom, Sparrow’s DollyZoom pays attention to the pivot placement and will adjust the lens and camera position accordingly, making use of this zoom type much more intuitive and productive
  • Two Point Perspective Toggle (press [2])
  • NamedViews Popup (press [n]) - only if named views are present in the document
  • Lock (press [~]) - locks the pivot and Sparrow MMB Hold mode will remain active even when MMB is released. To unlock, press [~] again. MMB press can also be used to unlock.

Two Point Perspective note : unlike default Rhino's current limited behavior, Sparrow works well with this camera projection mode. When toggling between standard and two point perspective, the camera stays in place; zoomlens works with real target at the center of the viewport; it is also possible to look around in all directions, and not only left and right. That makes Sparrow quite useful when working with views in this projection mode and allows to overcome current Rhino limitations. 

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Key Combos + MMB Click : 

A set of available key combinations that while pressed before MMB-Click will serve as shortcuts for user-defined or Sparrow built-in functions.
Fully customizable, with presets listed below:

Default keyboard shortcuts with MMB-Click:

  • [ Ctrl ]  - Ctrl+Shift SubObject Selection Toggle
  • [ Shift ] - MMB Click opposite action (LookAround if Pan is default, Pan if Lookaround default)
  • [ Alt ] - Restore Title View - restores any named view matching current viewport title. 
  • [ Ctrl + Shift ] - Selection Highlight Toggle - controls visibility of selection highlight in current display mode.
  • [ Ctrl + Alt ] - Maximize Viewport Toggle
  • [ Shift + Alt ] - DISABLED
  • [ Ctrl + Shift + Alt ] - Fullscreen Toggle (visible elements can be customized and remembered)
  • [ Tab ] - DISABLED

Special shortcuts:

  • [ MMB LongPress ] - Gumball Toggle. Executed when in MMB Hold mode and MMB is released in place, without any cursor movement
  • [ MMB + RMB ] - DISABLED. Executed when in MMB Hold mode and RMB is quickly clicked and released in place.
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