Difference of "move" and "translate" Commands

This section provides a quick introduction on the differences of 'turn' command and 'rotate' command in PyMol.

Both "move" and "translate" commands can be used to change the final visualization of the molecule structure. But they work differently:

"move" Command - Changes the camera location by move it along the x-axis, y-axis or z-axis in camera space. This command will change the origin of camera space and actually move the camera space.

Basically, the "move" command is not changing atom locations in the model space. It is only changing the camera location in different directions.

Examples of "move" commands:

# moving camera 5 units in the x-axis direction
# the molecule structure image moved horizontally
move x, 5

# move camera 5 units in the z-axis direction
# the molecule structure image enlarged
move z, 5

"translate" Command - Changes the molecule atom locations by move them in the direction and distance of the given vector in model space. This command will not change any viewing parameters.

Since atom locations are changes, the molecule structure is technically changed by the "translate" command.

Examples of "translate" commands:

# moving molecule atom locations 2 units in the x-axis direction.
translate [2,0,0]

Conclusion: don't use "translate" command, if you don't want to modify the molecule object. Use "move" command only.

Table of Contents

 About This Book

 Introduction of Molecules

 Molecule Names and Identifications

 Protein and Amino Acid

 Nucleobase, Nucleoside, Nucleotide, DNA and RNA

 Gene and Chromosome

 Protein Kinase (PK)

 SDF (Structure Data File)

 RDKit: Open-Source Cheminformatics Software

 PyMol Installation

PyMol GUI and CLI

 PyMol Screen Layout

 Load Molecule from File into PyMol

 Virtual Trackball Rotation on PyMol

 Zoom In and Out on PyMol

 PyMol Command Line Interface

 "load" and "delete" Commands on PyMol

 "log_open" and "log_close" Commands on PyMol

 Model Space and Camera Space on PyMol

 "get_view" and "set_view" on PyMol

 View Parameters Auto Adjusted on PyMol

 Zoom In/Out by Moving Camera

 Rotation with Transformation Matrix

 Rotation with "turn" Command

 Difference of "turn" and "rotate" Commands

Difference of "move" and "translate" Commands

 "center", "zoom" and "reset" Commands

 Model-to-Camera Space Coordinates Mapping

 Camera-to-Model Space Coordinates Mapping

 Turn Structure around Camera

 "show lines" Presentation Command

 "show sticks" Presentation Command

 "show spheres" Presentation Command

 "show surface" Presentation Command

 "show mesh" Presentation Command

 PyMol Selections

 PyMol Editing Functions

 PyMol Measurement Functions

 PyMol Movie Functions

 PyMol Python Integration

 PyMol Object Functions

 ChEMBL Database - European Molecular Biology Laboratory

 PubChem Database - National Library of Medicine

 PDB (Protein Data Bank)

 INSDC (International Nucleotide Sequence Database Collaboration)

 Resources and Tools

 Molecule Related Terminologies

 References

 Full Version in PDF/EPUB