As one of Vuo's developers, I work on Vuo's engine (the thing that makes compositions run), work on nodes, and write documentation. You'll see me on the forums answering people's questions about Vuo.
I've been developing apps and frameworks for several years (since I was in college). Pre-Vuo projects include Kineme Quartz Composer plugins, iOS apps for education, an app that analyzes photographs of tomato slices, and software to help people with disabilities use talking keyboards.
I enjoy using Vuo to make live music visuals. My hope for Vuo is that it will grow into a community of people of diverse backgrounds and identities making lots of different artistic, useful, unique, goofy, beautiful, crafty, wonderful compositions.
Oh, I was thinking the hypothetical Change Item Ranges in List would have a Ranges port that is a list of ranges, like Get Item Ranges from List. Having a singular Range port would not be as complex. Still, you'd have to do a little math to make sure you're feeding in the desired number of replacement items. (The range 2-5 would take 4 items, not 5.)
You can generate a list of positions in a range currently using Make Points along Line. It would be cool if we also had a node to more straightforwardly generate integer sequences.
Thanks for sharing the non-working .ply. This console message gave a clue as to why textures aren't applying correctly:
4/18/17 10:43:54.676 AM VuoComposition-HQrO63: VuoSceneObjectGet.c:240 convertAINodesToVuoSceneObjectsRecursively() Warning: Mesh '' is missing tangents, bitangents, texture coordinates. These channels will be automatically generated, but lighting and 3D object filters may not work correctly.
Actually the .ply file does have texture coordinates (as seen in MeshLab), but for some reason the library that Vuo uses to import meshes (Open Asset Import) seems to be ignoring them — so I've converted your question to a bug report.
When texture coordinates are missing, Vuo tries to generate some, so that shaders will at least partially work. But because this scene's texture map is complicated/piecemeal, the generated texture coordinates aren't close to what the mesh author intended.
@Bodysoulspirit's explanation is correct. Still, as @bLackburst pointed out, the fact that the Transform -> Rotation type converter is automatically chosen there can easily to mistakes when building a composition, so it could be considered a usability bug. Scheduled for work.
We're planning to provide both a Get 3D Mesh Object Info that outputs the shader (among other things) and a Get Mesh Info node that outputs the full mesh data (vertices, etc.). Get Mesh Info would take more time to execute, since it would have to download the vertices and stuff from the GPU and process them. But you wouldn't need to do that if you were just grabbing the shader. You would use Get 3D Mesh Object Info.