Need to create automatic animation for a particular thing? A Maya expression can do the trick. Anytime you need something more than a direct one to one connection, a Maya expression can make that easy.
If you are just getting started with the expression syntax in Maya, there are a lot of great resources around for you to dive into. Patrick Woo, has been posting a few, helping new users get started and offering tips for more seasoned ones. Patrick Woo Ker Yang is a VFX Generalist TD at VHQ Media, and his latest post has a look into using a Maya expression that can drive multiple objects, in various ways.
This can give you a simple rig where objects driven by a Maya expression can arrange themselves in interesting ways.
Patrick’s set up has a slight offset in rotation and translation for every object, looking at the object’s values before it. So as the first cube moves along a designated axis, the spacing between the objects and the rotations react to that change. Simple, with some uses in real work!