GSoC 2019: Outliner Improvements Ideas

Can I point out that this currently works opposite to mesh selection.

In a mesh ctrl-click will select a range of vertices, while shift-click will add to the selection. In the outliner, shift-click selects a range of objects, while ctrl-click adds to the selection.

Thanks, but isn’t Sync Selection a function for UV editing?

I just tried it again, and in a standard scene selecting objects in the Outliner works, but in a certain scene it doesn’t. Maybe I should file a bug report.

@MetinSeven @Sunbeam @TheRedWaxPolice When I merged to master I left the versioning code in the wrong place. That meant that files created during the 2.80 beta would have synced selection on by default, but newer files didn’t have it on by default. I have since fixed this issue, so older files will load with synced selection enabled.

Also since my initial commits to master I added support for the industry standards keymap.

The use of turning off synced selection is to set parents, move objects between collections, etc without changing viewport selection. It’s not a commonly used feature, but its there for when it is needed.

Yes, I’m aware :slight_smile: Maybe it could change to be in line with how the 3D view does selection but I doubt it. Lists like the outliner use Shift to select range and ctrl to add to selection. I think it is best to keep those standards.


@jc4d @nokipaike Currently selecting, activating, and mode toggling are all mixed into one operator. Earlier today we had a discussion on how to simplify activation, edit mode toggling, and selecting. Expect some improvements here soon

This would be nice. It would be a little more difficult to add though, because as far as I know, the outliner currently has no knowledge of linking. Collections simply maintain a list of objects, and the outliner draws those objects.

I will keep this in mind though. And others have suggested using a different color or italics. I don’t think Blender’s font drawing has italics support, I haven’t noticed it anywhere yet.

Thanks for the suggestions! I’m going to make a design task. I especially agree with #4.


@natecraddock I’ve just watched Blender Today and tested the Outliner Improvements and it got me really excited! :smiley:
Love all the work you are doing on the outliner.

I was wondering since we now have Arrow-Navigation controls - would it be possible to have rename be default to be [Return]?
This always felt very natural in other outliners to me. Especially when renaming hierarchies. You see what is selected in the viewport as well, now so it’s even faster. Rename an object, hit [enter], tap [downarrow] to go to the next, hit [enter], rename, … repeat.

Also I’ve found (this is probably still WIP, though) that Hitting F2 does not currently rename the currently highlighted object in the outliner but the last active object. This adds a lot of navigation to renaming from the outliner again.

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I’m glad you enjoy the new features! :slight_smile:

I think rename will stay with F2 to remain consistent with rename elsewhere in Blender. You could always change the keymap for yourself. Also, double click to rename works on the element names. Perhaps we could also add Return to the keymap as another option, as it has been freed up by my branch. I’ll ask :slight_smile:

Yes, rename will rename the active element (lighter blue). The active element should be the last clicked on element, which works fine for mouse click selection. Walk navigation only moves the selection around, not the active element. This will be fixed soon! The issue with moving the active is activating mesh data switches to edit mode. Once edit mode toggling is fixed, walk navigation can move the active element which will be much more intuitive and useful for renaming.

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The new features are fantastic. I just wish we could also rename the object data, add prefixes/suffixes to it, etc, when pressing F2 or alt+F2 or some other combination. Having object data properly named helps a lot when there’s a scene with a huge amount of objects.

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Is this fix already available in master?

Ah yes. You’re right. It really shouldn’t replace a consistent shortcut. Forgot about that over all the excitement. :wink:
As an option it would really be cool, though.

Nice! :smiley:

In the 3D window, the M key is “move to collection” (shft+M - link to collection)
It would be convenient to have the same functionality (on M hotkey) in the outliner itself (not just for objects, but for collections)

I can rename Object Data the same way as objects. Double-click or F2 on the name of the ObData, and change it. Does this not work?

we see that now that you are familiar with the blender code, you are starting to become a volcano :volcano: :grin:

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First of all, can’t thank you enough for all your hard work, using the new outliner feels great!

One thing that’s strange, not sure if it has been mentioned yet - when in edit mode, I’d expect to get out of edit mode when selecting another object in the outliner.

I can jump between them in edit mode when clicking on the object data icon, which is really convenient, but I’d expect to be able to go into object mode by just clicking on another (or the same) object name.


nice strike of intuition.

I don’t want to say something stupid, but I think it’s also quite simple, as long as:
“in case the object is in edit mode, on click on the outliner object go out of edit mode and select the object”

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Another thing I’d add - excuse me for not reading the many comments before this one - is to be able to make conscious operations with hidden objects. If I need to delete or do whatever to an object that’s hidden it’s a bit of a hassle having to unhide it first - especially if it’s a very heavy piece of geo. I know it’s probably a decision made by the main devs, but in production it’s sometimes crucial to be able to get rid of or modify relations of objects that are not visible.

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this is probably a bit nitpicky, but… it would be nice to have highlighted items show up as they’re being selected by the box select, similar to windows explorer



I mean something like this



One small feature that I would really like to see come over from Softimage: Middle-Clicking an item in the Outliner will select it’s entire heirarchy - I miss that feature.

Thanks for all the work on the outliner - it’s definitely an improvement.

That’s the same in C4D… Great feature… But middle click in blender is kinda precious in blender lol… No sure how they would do that…

If those options could be changed in the keymap that would be nice… :wink:

Not middle click but if you ctrl click the icon of the object in the outliner the hierarchy is selected

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