Environment Setup for Designing on macOS

You.i TV has a custom integration with Adobe After Effects (AE) to give you a seamless experience with the Adobe suite you’re already familiar with. To get started, you’ll need to install our Engine, then our AE plugin. We support Adobe After Effects Creative Cloud version 2018 through 2021.

When it comes to installing the plugin, you have two options:

Which installation method should you choose? It depends on how you plan to work.

We have a special Preview Tool that lets you preview your designs in AE regardless of how you install the plugin. If previewing is all you want to do, your simplest option is to install only the plugin.

However, if you’d like to export your designs from AE and test them on actual devices, you’ll need You.i Platform installed. In that case, use the second installation option.

Option 1: Install the Plugin Only

If you’re working with a development team that already has You.i Platform installed, you can install and use the plugin files without installing the full Engine.

Ask a developer to zip the contents of the youiengine/6.13.0/tools/AEPlugin folder.

When you unzip the file, you’ll have two folders:

  • Plug-ins
  • Scripts

Copy the Plugins to After Effects

Close After Effects, then use the macOS Finder application to navigate to the Plug-ins folder you unzipped. Copy all the files in that folder.

Navigate to your After Effects application folder, then the Plugins subfolder. Paste the copied files into the Plugins subfolder.

Copy the Scripts to After Effects

Go to the Scripts folder you unzipped and navigate to the ScriptUI Panels subfolder. Copy everything from that folder.

Back in your After Effects application folder, navigate to Scripts > ScriptUI Panels. Paste your copied files into the ScriptUI Panels subfolder.

You can now test the plugin.

Option 2: Install the Engine and the Plugin

Open Terminal or another shell app on your Mac. First, we’ll go through some prerequisites to make sure you have everything you’ll need.

Install Prerequisites

Install Xcode and Xcode Command Line Tools

Even if you’re not a coder, you’ll probably want to test changes you make to your files. To do that, you need Apple’s Xcode and the Xcode command line tools.

Follow Apple’s instructions to install Xcode. You.i Platform release 6.13 supports Xcode version 12.x to 13.x.

Now that you have Xcode installed, open a terminal window to install the associated Xcode command line tools:

xcode-select --install

Install Homebrew

You need to install Homebrew first, before installing any other dependencies. To install it, follow the steps on the Homebrew website.

Check that installed successfully. In the Terminal window enter:

brew doctor

Install Dependencies

We now need to install the following tools and/or dependencies:

  • Yarn
  • Watchman
  • Node
  • CMake
  • Ruby
  • Ninja (only required for Android apps)
brew install yarn watchman node cmake ruby ninja

Install Google Protobuf

Install the Google Protobuf Ruby gem using the following command:

gem install google-protobuf

Install You.i Platform

From your terminal window, run the following command to install the You.i TV command line tool (often called the CLI, or command line interface).

yarn global add youi-cli

Then, log in to our server with your provided API key and install the Engine.

youi-tv login    # Enter your API key or user name when prompted.
youi-tv install 6.13.0  # If asked, accept most recent version of Babel or other dependencies

Install the Plugin

Run the following command to install the plugin to the After Effects Plug-ins folder:

youi-tv setup-plugin

A prompt appears if privileges are needed to continue. If installation is successful, you’ll see a message like the following:

-> Installed AEPlugin version 6.13.0 into /Applications/Adobe After Effects 2021

If the installation fails, you can use Option 1 to install the files manually instead, by copying them from your Engine installation folder.

Test the Plugin

To verify that the AE plugins and scripts are installed correctly, launch After Effects and open the Composition menu. The menu shows a number of entries beginning with You.i.

Screen capture of the Composition menu in After Effects, with the You.i options visible

Next, open the After Effects Window menu and look for You.i options near the bottom of the menu.

Screen capture of the Window menu in After Effects, with the You.i options visible

You can also check the contents of your Plug-ins folder under your AE install. You should see the following plugins:

  • You.i Baton.plugin
  • You.i Style.plugin
  • YouiEngine.plugin

Now you might want to:

Troubleshooting

Troubleshooting Tool Versions

If your team is using an older version of the Engine, Homebrew may install versions of third-party tools that aren’t compatible with your Engine version. In this case, you may need to install older versions of these tools.

To find out what versions are required for your Engine version, make sure you’re using the appropriate version of our documentation and review the Hardware and Software Specifications.

To learn how to install earlier versions, consult the third-party websites themselves.

Troubleshooting Permissions Errors

If you run into permissions errors when installing third-party tools, such as the following:

error An unexpected error occurred: "/Users/jsmith/node_modules/core-js: EACCES: permission denied,mkdir '/var/folders/v3'".

Try adding sudo to the beginning of your installation commands.