Norman’s naming convention is set up in such a way that it’s easy to grab all controls, or types of controls, using a name search. All controls are prepended with “ctrl” followed immediately by the type of control, such as “FK”, “IK” or “Face.” Left Right and Center are abbreviated and separated by underscores, making them searchable, too. The ls command in MEL lets you use wildcards, here’s a couple examples for selecting groups of controls:
select `ls -type "transform" "ctrl*"`;
All FK controls:
select `ls -type "transform" "ctrlFK*"`;
All controls on the left side:
select `ls -type "transform" "ctrl*_Lf_*"`;
Etcetera. You need the -type “transform” flag because otherwise it will return shapes as well. If your character has a namespace, you’ll have to include that in your search term, too, for example, if the character’s namespace is char, you’d do:
select `ls -type "transform" "char:ctrl*"`;
You can also use the “Select by name” field in the upper right of the maya interface in much the same way.
Norman’s pretty old, and now I’d organize controls with sets and tag them with attributes, but it doesn’t hurt to have a strong, searchable naming convention.