terminology image

The Ziva Maya Plugin is intended for simulating creatures, and so we use terminology from biology and creatures.

The code that couples the scene together and “solves” for the state of the dynamic physical system. This is exposed in the zSolver node.
A collection of simulation components (bodies, attachments, etc) that are simulated together in one solver. The parts of a creature can physically interact with each other.
bodies (simulation bodies)
Bone, tissue, or cloth objects.
A mesh that is not computed by the solver. The motion (and deformation) of the bones are inputs to the solver, and can be controlled with all the standard Maya tools.
A general deformable elastic object that has 3D thickness, e.g. muscles or fat. The motion of a tissue is computed by the solver.
A general deformable elastic object that is sheet-like, e.g. skin, fascia, or fabrics. The motion of a cloth is computed by the solver.
The physical properties of a body, such as its density and stiffness.
muscle fiber
Muscle fibers can be added to a tissue to enable it to contract and flex like a real muscle. How much it flexes is controlled by its excitation.
A subtissue has all the properties that a tissue has, but applies those properties to its parent tissue rather than being its own independent elastic object.
A connection between bodies that attaches them together. They may be soft (springy) or hard, and they may be fixed (as if the bodies are stapled together) or sliding (as if the bodies are stuck in contact).
tetrahedral mesh
Each tissue is simulated as a low-resolution tetrahedral (tet) mesh. The deformations of the tissue are all due to deformations of the tet mesh, because the tissue’s triangle mesh is embedded in the tet mesh.
embedded mesh
Maya meshes may be embedded within a tissue (or cloth). The embedding makes the triangle mesh move with the tissue.