If something is not clear,
and you need further explanation.
Or if you have further questions or comments, please email me at:

info @ mayacharacterrigging.com

There are still some typos that I have come across, even though I did try to catch them all before the printing of the book. You can find the corrections on the downloads page or click HERE to access them online.

When you select the joint tool and go to the options and set the orientation to XZY, why do you do that?

The reason for setting the XZY orientation in the joint tool is because of vertical joint chains. When X points towards the child joint in a vertical joint chain, the X axis points up or down in world orientation. If the second axis world orientation is Y (as in the default setting of XYZ), it is impossible to have both Y and X point up/down at the same time. Maya then gets confused and points the Y axis in arbitrary directions. If the setting is changed to XZY, Z becomes the second axis world orientation, and Maya points the Z axis front to back. Selecting +Z as the second axis world orientation ensures that the Z always points forward in world space.

More can be found on page 181 of the text!

I just purchased your book today, and noticed that you said to contact you if we need different file versions.  I am using Maya 8.0; do you have maya files for this version?

All of the files for Maya are saved as a .ma file. This stands for Maya ASCII, which means the file is stored as text, or in other words coding language. This allows you to open the file in Maya, but you can also open it with a text editing software, such as Wordpad (for Windows users). Simply right-mouse-button click and hold on the file name, and choose wordpad, or open a text editor first then do FILE > OPEN and browse to the DVD to find the file you need, and you will see something like the following at the top. Make sure to change the version of the file from 2008 to 8.0 as highlighted below:

//Maya ASCII 2008 scene
//Name: 08_asgn07.ma
//Last modified: Tue, Oct 09, 2007 11:49:06 AM
//Codeset: 1252
requires maya "2008";
currentUnit -l centimeter -a degree -t film;
fileInfo "application" "maya";
fileInfo "product" "Maya Unlimited 2008";
fileInfo "version" "2008";
fileInfo "cutIdentifier" "200708022245-704165";
fileInfo "osv" "Microsoft Windows XP Service Pack 2 (Build 2600)\n";

OR it may have been created in 8.5, so you would change the 5 to 0 :

//Maya ASCII 8.5 scene
//Name: 01_referenceImages.ma
//Last modified: Fri, Jun 08, 2007 11:27:59 AM
//Codeset: 1252
requires maya "8.5";
currentUnit -l centimeter -a degree -t film;
fileInfo "application" "maya";
fileInfo "product" "Maya Unlimited 8.5";
fileInfo "version" "8.5";
fileInfo "cutIdentifier" "200612162224-692032";
fileInfo "osv" "Microsoft Windows XP Service Pack 2 (Build 2600)\n";
createNode transform -s -n "persp";

You will then need to save as a copy to your computer, once the changes have been made.

In the book it mentions on page 318 steps  that we need to group the eyes and parent the group to headTip. However when i do that i get the following error message :

// Error: Referenced objects parented to referenced objects may not be reparented.

The file that I am working with is referencing another file as mentioned by the book before skeleton. What am I doing wrong?

You will need to open your model file (the one that is referenced) and make sure that the eyes or the eye groups are not part of another group or parented to anything else in that file. Simply select the eyes (or their groups - if they are grouped with a lattice and base?) and press shift+p  Then you should have no problem grouping them in your rig file to parent to the skeleton.