Export Script to Pyrodigital ShowDirector** CSV
In order to make a firing script, you need to configure your show with the specifications of your firing system. The easiest way to do this is with the menu item "Show > Set firing system > Pyrodigital". You can also set the user preference "File > Preferences > Firing system > Pyrodigital" so that all your new shows will come up pre-configured for Pyrodigital.
Once you've scripted your show you can download the show directly to the Pyrodigital field controller with the menu command "File > Download to controller > Pyrodigital" or you can export the script as a CSV file that you can import into ShowDirector. For further instructions, please see the Addressing section.
Modules and Hexadecimal Notation
ShowDirector and Pyrodigital* firing systems use hexadecimal numbers for various fields including module and pin addresses. Since Finale supports multiple firing systems, it is necessary to distinguish between hexadecimal numbers and (normal) decimal numbers. To represent hexadecimal numbers in Finale, Finale precedes them with a dollar sign, e.g., $a and $0a both represent the number ten in hexadecimal. The fields are not case sensitive. To enter a hexadecimal number, just precede it with the dollar sign. If you don't include the dollar sign, the number will be interpreted as a decimal number.
Pyrodigital systems support 127 modules (field controllers) with 16 pins (cues) each. In hexadecimal the field controller addresses are $01 to $7f. The pin numbers are $0 to $f. In Finale the module address is almost always separated out from the pin address as two separate numbers: the module address being a two digit hex number like $01 and the pin address being a single digit hex number like $f. Since Pyrodigital users are accustomed to seeing the module address and pin address combined into a three digit hexadecimal number, Finale does combine the addresses in some reports. Finale also elides the dollar sign in some reports for cleaner presentation.
Exporting to ShowDirector CSV and Importing into Visual Show Director
Since Finale exports CSV files, and Visual Show Director imports Excel files, you have to convert the CSV file exported from Finale into an Excel file in the proper form for Visual Show Director to import. Conceptually, this is a simple task: just open the CVS in Excel and save it out in XLS format. In real life, the task is a little more complicated because of the way Excel and Visual Show Director handle text and file formats. Please follow these directions exactly:
1. Address your show in Finale using hexadecimal model and pin numbers, as explained above.
2. Export your show from Finale using the menu item "File > Export firing system script > ShowDirector (PD) CSV". Save the file with a TXT extension.
3. Open the exported TXT file in Excel using the standard open file dialog (or import it as data into Excel). When prompted by Excel, selected "delimited text" and "comma" as the delimiter. Then select the "TEXT" format for the "ADDR" column (column J) so that addresses like "0E0" do not get shortened by Excel to "E0".
4. Change the name of the worksheet in the tab below the table to "Sheet1" (exactly) if it is not already so named. Make sure the capitalization is exactly correct.
5. Save the Excel file in the format "Excel 97-2003 Workbook (*.xls)".
6. Import the Excel file into Visual Show Director.
These instructions assume you are using a version of Finale that is no older than v11156 (which you can download from the forums here: http://www.finalefireworks.com/node/1383159)
Understanding the ShowDirector CSV Format
The ShowDirector CSV format groups multiple devices firing on the same module/pin into a single row, even if the devices have different effect types, mortar angles, launch positions or notes; thus the CSV always has one row per used module/pin address. In the case of multiple devices on the same row, Finale combines the devices' effect types, mortar angles, launch positions, and notes in each field, separated by spaces. For example, if both a Peony and a Chrysanthemum were in the same row, the Effect Description column would contain "Peony Chrysanthemum". Similarly, if they were both at -15 degrees mortar angle, the ANGLE field would contain "-15 -15". The QTY field, however, contains a single integer representing the total device count.
The CGHZ Field
The CGHZ field in Show Director and on Pyrodigital controllers is a number from 0-16, identifying a "Caliber group hazard" that can be disabled during operation of a show on account of safety conditions. In Finale any set of effects can be grouped into a CGHZ group, independent of their caliber. Simply select the effects in the Firing View and choose the menu item "Actions > Change lockout...". Values 0-16 and blank are legal values. Blank is translated to 0 when downloaded to the controller.
* Pyrodigital is a trademark of Pyrodigital consultants, Inc., which has no affiliation with Finale Fireworks.
** Show Director is a trademark of Infinity Visions, which has no affiliation with Finale Fireworks.