Introduction to Lispix version Lx04q6
by Jeffery Paulsen 6/24/02
General Notes on the Tutorials
The tutorials are intended to give a user a start on lispix
and illustrate the use of some of its major tools. Please also keep
in mind, lispix is constantly being modified and updated with new
features (though many of these versions are not available on the
website). Thus, these tutorials are by no means comprehensive and
they may be a bit off in describing what happens on your version.
Typically I'll write the version I currently used while writing at the
top of each tutorial. (For this given tutorial I used Lx04q6.) Also,
as a general convention I will place a button or menu label in single
quotes while exact text from some other part of lispix in double
quotes. Now, get ready to learn lispix.
Lispix is an image processing, but mainly analysis, utility
for researchers who have to analyze image files in ways generic image
programs will not do. The program is written more for doing unique
and specific tasks than as a program for general use. Thus, its
appearance and interface can be quite different at times from typical
windows programs and can even be counterintuitive. However, Lispix
is still a powerful tool for image analysis and, with a little
practice, can be learned.
In general, help can be found in these tutorials, under the Lispix
help menu and on the website. If you need to know what a specific
button or function does, click on it while pressing the control button
to obtain a description of it. If you haven't already figured out how
to install lispix, please go to that tutorial first.
The Main Menu
Through the main menu all of the lispix functions may be
reached. Functions, once selected from the main menu will either
immediately execute, form a dialogue box, or form a tool window.
Clicking on the '+' button on the far right hand end of the menu
toggles the menu between 3 possible states. The initial state has the
typical windows pull down menu within which are the majority of
functions. The second state adds a series of buttons for commonly
used functions such as zooming, and toggling drag mode on and off.
The third state adds another area allowing for the modification of
read, write, auxiliary, and blob directories.
The series of pull down menus found in the initial menu state are
ordered similarly to a standard graphics program such as photoshop.
Under the file menu, there are the typical opening, saving, importing,
exporting and exit functions, but there is no capacity for printing.
The image menu allows basic modifications to an image's properties,
the window menu allows for the control of the various windows open
within lispix, the help menu allows access to basic lispix help files
and so on. However, the color, palette and tools menus are little
different from those in other graphics programs. Color only lets you
pick a color tools can use. Often, such a setting is for a tool color
on an image where color selection is convenient in order to obtain
optimal contrast between the picture and tool. Palette, other than
recording and loading palette information, also contains various
sliders. These sliders allow you, and certain lispix tools, to view
images with various thresholds, intensity, gamma, color, etc. Another
slider allows the selection of direction, which is useful in viewing
direction dependant functions like the gradient filter. The tools
menu is unique in that it contains specialized functions that do not
fit well under any of the other categories and many of these tools are
designed to address specific needs.
If you have not already done so, try to take a look around the main
menu. Take note of functions that you might want use and if you are
not sure of what one does, control-left click on it for a brief
description. Remember to also click on the '+' button to see all of
the menu states. Do not worry about keeping track of all the
functions, typically you will only be using a few of these and will
thus quickly learn their locations.
Opening Files and Setting Default Directories
Before you can do much of anything with lispix, you have to
open a file or make a new one. Lispix does have some shape and
fractal drawing capacities, but its main use is for analyzing digital
images so opening an image file will be our first task. Click on file
and then open. The typical Window's dialogue box for selecting files
should appear. Select a file as you normally would and click open. A
window containing the image should now appear.
Before looking any closer at that image, let us examine the other open
functions, and lispix's default directories. Click on 'file' and then
on 'select & open' (from now on such procedures will be represented as
file->select & open). You should see a listing of images from the
directory of the image you just opened. Selecting an image file and
clicking on 'ok' will open that image in a new window, but there is no
need to have another image open right now so just click on 'cancel'
instead to get rid of the window. Click the '+' button until the menu
is in its third state and thus shows a series of default directories.
Now, look to the line with "image read directory" in it. To the left
is a button 'R' and to the right is the current directory setting.
This should be set to the directory containing the last image you
opened. The file->select &open function, like some other functions in
lispix use this setting for a directory setting. This is why you saw
the list of files in that directory when you used it. Click on the
'R' button. You should see a pull down menu with the choices 'clear,'
'demo images,' 'set' and 'from temp.' To set the default read
directory click on 'set.' A generic windows dialogue box should open
allowing you to select a folder. Select a different folder and click
on 'ok,' "image read directory" should now be set to the folder you
picked. Also note that "temp" is also now set to this directory.
The other options under the 'R' button do the following: 'clear' sets
the directory to "nil," 'demo images' sets the directory to one
containing some lispix demo images and 'from temp' sets the directory
to the "temp" directory. The corresponding buttons next to the other
default directories work in a similar manner as for "set read
directory." However, these other buttons lack the 'demo images'
option and for setting the "image write directory" there is the 'new'
option, which creates a new directory and set the "image write
directory" to it. Also, with these 'set' functions you are only
allowed to set it to the current "image read directory" or farther
down the directory tree. To go higher, you must set "image read
directory" to "nil" before being able to change the setting to any
directory. The "image read directory" 'set' function in turn will
only let you set the directory to the "image write directory" or
lower. The "temp" setting is different from the others. Under "temp"
is stored the directories that you have previously selected. Clicking
the arrow buttons next to it will cycle through these directories so
that it is easy to set your default directories to a previously used
one. Clicking on these arrow buttons now will result in it switching
between the directory you just set the read directory to and the
directory containing the image you opened.
If you have been following along so far, the main menu should
still be in its fully extended state. If not, and a 'zoom' button is
not apparent, click on the '+' button until it appears. (Once should
be enough since 'zoom' is in the secondary portion of the main menu.)
The 'zoom' button and the three buttons to its right all have a light
blue background and perform various zoom functions. The smaller '+'
button here zooms in, the '1x' button sets the picture to a 1x
magnification and the '-' button zooms out. If these buttons fail to
do anything, try clicking on the picture first and then zooming.
Also, keep in mind that zooming out to magnifications less than 1x
will take the computer considerably more time than zooming in. Under
the zoom button are listed various zooms and other special zoom
functions. If you want find out what these do try them out.
Many times the image you will be looking at will be larger
than its window and you will need to look at different portions of it.
Lispix does not have the typical Windows scroll bars to move around,
but does provide other methods. To the right of the zoom buttons is a
gray one labeled 'drag.' Click on it. The button now says 'drag is
ON.' With drag mode on, left click on the picture and hold the mouse
button DOWN. With the left mouse button down, moving the mouse with
cause the picture to move. Lispix will not stop you at the edge of
the image but simply shows white past the image's location. To turn
drag mode off, click on the 'drag' button a second time.
Another way to look around at pictures is with the navigator. To open
up the navigator go to View->Navigator. In a small window, a zoomed
out version of the image should appear. There should be a rectangle
representing your current viewing area of the picture. To move around
the picture using the navigator, left click inside the navigator
window where you want the center of view to be in the image window.
The navigator should center the image window's view to the
corresponding point you clicked on.