Animation Editor

What is Animation Timeline

Animation Timeline is a .qianim file created interactively thanks to the Timeline editor.

This is the way to give life and movement to the body of your robot.

Creating Animation Timeline

To create an Animation Timeline file:

Step Action

Before starting, make sure you are connected to a robot.

For further details, see:

Choose File > New > Animation Timeline.

Enter a name for your animation file and click Create button.

Your file is created in the resources directory and displayed in the Timeline Editor.


Animation Editor needs to connect to a Virtual Robot or a Physical Robot.


If there is no robot connected yet, the dialog below allows connecting to a robot:

Timeline editor

Timeline editor lets you set your robot’s action for each frame. These are the key features of Timeline editor.
Index Description
Tool Bar
Frame Ruler
Motion Layer
Actuator List
Label interface

Tool Bar

Tool Bar displays the buttons for the following functions
Index Name Description
1 Editor select

Select Keyframe or Curve editor

image31 Keyframe editor: the default editor, displays a detailed view of the Motion ruler.

image30 Curves editor: displays curves representing the evolution of the values of the selected joint(s).

2 Store actuator Store the actuator values of the robot’s current posture to the selected keyframe.
3 FPS Set the frame per second rate to play the animation.
4 Play/Stop Play/Stop the current animation set in Motion layer

Actuator List

Actuator List displays the list of Joints and Groups of Joints corresponding to the robot associated to the current Timeline.
Index Name Description
1 Actuators Select one or several joints to display in Timeline editor
2 Color Modify the color of a curve

Frame Ruler

Frame Ruler is the indicator that displays the frame numbers and you set the Start and End frames.
Index Name Description
1 Frames Shows the numbering of frames
2 Start frame The starting frame of the selected range (Green)
3 End frame The finishing frame of the selected range (Red)
4 Time cursor The current frame in the timeline (Blue)

Motion Layer

The Motion Layer is where the robot’s movements are stored in the Timeline. Each Motion keyframe on the Motion layer corresponds to a position of the robot or a part of its body.

Creating keyframe

Step Action
Right-click a frame in the grey Timeline and choose Create keyframe.
Choose the Actuators you want to store the value of (Whole body, Head only, Arms only or Legs only).

Tip: the contextual menu does not display the Create keyframe command?

Check the displayed view, make sure you are in the Keyframe editor, not the Curves editor.

Selecting keyframe

Step Action
Click on a Motion keyframe and the robot will automatically take the position corresponding to this Motion keyframe.
Drag and drop Motion keyframes in the grey Timeline to select several Motion keyframes.
Right-click the grey Timeline and choose “Selection > Select” all to select all Motion keyframes.

Removing keyframe

Step Action
Select one or several Motion keyframes
Right-click it and choose Remove joints from keyframe.
Choose the joints you want to remove (Whole body, Head, Arms or Legs).

Moving keyframe

Step Action
Select one or several Motion keyframes
Drag and drop the selected Motion keyframes to the desired position.

Curves editor

Curves editor displays the change of the joint values between keyframes as curves. The editor allows you to fine-tune the joint values of your robot animation.

Curves are only displayed if connected to a robot. In fact, the curves depend on the robot configuration and joints limits.

These are the key features of Curves editor.
Index Description
Tool Bar
Actuator List (same as Timeline Editor’s)
Frame Ruler (same as Timeline Editor’s)
Motion Layer (same as Timeline Editor’s)
Label Layer (Label Layer is explained in Label interface)

Curves editor displays the buttons for the following functions.


Index Name Description
1 Editor select / Store actuator The same functions as in Timeline editor
2 Mode Toggle between 3 modes: Selection, Zoom, Scroll
3 Interpolation modes

Set the interpolation modes of the selected Motion keyframe.

Interpolation modes: Bezier auto, Bezier smooth, Bezier symmetrical, Simplify, Show tangents, View all , Smooth, Symmetric

4 Keyframe select Select next/previous keyframe

Left/Right interpolation


Set left and right interpolation modes

Label interface

What is label interface

If you want your tablet to do some work while your robot is processing your animation, you can define labels through Label interface. You can create Label layers in Label interface and each layer can have a set of labels, each of which defines the task to be done in the tablet.

A sequence diagram of a Label interface would look something like this.


By using Label interface, you can add operations that will be carried out in the tablet side while playing your animation.

For further details, see How to know when a label is reached.

Create label

The Label layers you define are saved in the animation file. In Label interface, you can place your labels in the appropriate animation frame when your label callback should be run. The actual task that is run should be defined in your Android source code.

To add a label, follow these steps.

Step Action
Open the animation file you want to add your label.

Click plus-btn button to add a layer. You can set the layer name to your preference.

After creating a layer, double click a location in the keyframe to add a label. You can set the label name to your preference.
You can delete a label by selecting the label and pressing Del key, or by clicking the delete option in the sub menu (open by right clicking the label). You can also move the keyframe of the label with drag & drop.