iaian7 » code » dashboard   John Einselen, 31.07.09 (updated 16.02.12)    

Apple OS X Dashboard widget for converting Moho format phoneme animation files into Lightwave envelopes or After Effects keyframes. Preston-Blair and Simplified Flash phoneme sets are included along with user definable sets (more information on phoneme set translation can be found here on

Moho files can be creating using freeware applications like Papagayo, Yolo, and JLipSync. Keep in mind the latter two use larger phoneme sets, which will need to be translated to a smaller subset (like Preston-Blair or Simplified Flash), or set up as a custom user preset in the widget.

Newtek Lightwave

Lightwave lipsync requires a model with morph targets set up for each phoneme, and morph mixer deformation applied in Layout. To generate animation envelops, simple select the desired keyframe type in the widget (LW linear, LW stepped, LW TCB, or LW TCB flat) and the phoneme set used by your model, then select your Moho file in Finder. Click and hold the file while opening Dashboard back up, and drop the icon into the drop zone. Envelop files will be automatically saved into the same folder as the original Moho file, one for each phoneme. Once you have your Lightwave scene set up, simply open the graph editor and import the appropriate envelop file for each morph channel.

Adobe After Effects

After Effects requires a pre-comp with phonemes on every frame (or every second). Once this is dropped into a parent comp, Time Remap can essentially select a phoneme based on its time in the pre-comp. To generate the Time Remap keyframes, choose the desired animation setup (AE frames or AE seconds) and phoneme set, then find your Moho file in Finder. Click and hold the file while opening Dashboard back up, and drop the icon into the drop zone. The widget will automatically save a plain text file to the same directory as the Moho file, as well as copy the keyframe data to your clipboard. As a reminder, the phoneme set is also displayed in the sequential order they should appear in the AE pre-comp. Back in your After Effects file, select the pre-comp from within the parent comp, press [ to go to the begining of the comp, and press cmd-v to paste the data. Time Remap will be automatically applied to the pre-comp, and the keyframes added. Unfortunately, you still have to manually set the keyframes to hold keyframes (otherwise the lip animations will bounce in time from phoneme to phoneme) – right click and choose toggle hold keyframe from the contextual menu.

Converting Files

In the OSX Finder, select the desired MOHO data file and while still dragging open Dashboard using the keyboard shortcut (on most newer macs, the default is F4, on many older keyboards, the default is F12). Drop the still-selected files into the drop area of the widget, and the conversion process will start automatically using the previously selected settings. Files will be saved alongside the original MOHO file.


download version 1.7.5

By clicking the download link, you signify your acceptance of the following agreement. This application is freeware, to be used and abused however you like. However, the author(s) assume absolutely no liability, and the software is offered with no warranty or quality assurance. And God forbid you use it in the operation of nuclear facilities (a warning I see in the EULA of so many applications, I really do wonder how exactly someone could use a graphics utility in the operation of a power plant). In short, use at your own risk.

Version History

1.7.6 — fixed preference saving on hide
1.7.5 — updates error code results and accuracy
1.7 — fixes preference saving in most cases
1.6.5 — adds return to main screen after successful
1.6 — adds auto update feature on startup
1.5 — fixes copy-to-clipboard for AE keyframes
1.4 — adds After Effects keyframe support
1.3 — adds better error reporting
1.2 — fixes preferences and finalized feature set
1.1 — fixes bugs in the javascript routines
1.0 — initial release


Support is not technically available, but you can still send suggestions and questions via the contact form  (if you don’t mind my slow-or-never responses), non-support comments can be left below.

Newtek and Lightwave 3D are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Newtek Incorporated in the United States and/or other countries.

Adobe and After Effects are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Adobe Systems Incorporated in the United States and/or other countries.