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Creation of custom GDLobjects directly in GS

Anonymous
Not applicable
Hello, i know we can access and manipulate the parameters of an existing object from within Grasshopper.
I was thinking that it would be amazing if full GDL 3D Objects could be created directly in GS together with their parameters and then sent to Archicad just like other BIM elements. That would be a type of visual GDL connection and would be a huge feature. There is the Rhino to GDL convertor already but can we add more intelligence to the 3D objects like dimension parameters and more?
Will this be possible to add this feature in a future release of Rhino-GS connection or is it in your wishlist? Thanks!
28 REPLIES 28

leceta
Expert
I have no idea about the technical/effort implications of such a feature, but this would signify a rebirth for GDL.

My most passionate 1+ to this wish.

Now, coming back to the earth, I suspect that Graphisoft has already considered this, and:

a.-for some reason is not viable : (
b.-they are already working on this, or has plans to do so.

Anonymous
Not applicable
This is exactly what i was thinking of but to be applied to every other type of gdl objects like windows, curtain wall elements, doors, etc.
Grasshopper parameters that stay dynamic in smart objects.

https://youtu.be/-w04bGUOV8c

Anonymous
Not applicable
I wonder if is technically and legally possible for a 3rd party developer to create a kind of Grasshopper- GDL translator/convertor?

jorgebeneitez
Booster
My +1 as well!
Jorge Benéitez

M.arch | Registered Architect | ARB
BIM Implementation | Graphisoft Registered Consultant.

Anonymous
Not applicable
That is something I have been discussing here in the office. The creation of custom GDL objects, where the grasshopper parameters (sliders for example) translate directly into GDL parameters (inside the object selection settings).

Have my +1

Anonymous
Not applicable
+1 super nice idea. However, creating GDLs and modifying is also a big step.


Anyway, there is an interesting solution from BIMObject. They call it LENA and its framework for making objects that can be imported to different platforms.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uw89UZQSZTc

As far as remember it's targeted more to producers and library developers since it's billed by published library element.

Nader Belal
Mentor
@kzaremba

Lena is not designed to take advantage of the GDL code optimisation.

ie: Quite verbose, very bulky, and consumes a lot of computer resources which is actually the opposite of the aim that GDL have been created.
A good friend of mine have once told me that I´m so brute that I´m capable of creating a GDL script capable of creating GDLs.

Nader Belal
Mentor
Hi everyone,

@Constantin Cozma, well in the new ArchiCAD-Grasshopper connection you can create your own GDL object from with in Grasshopper, of course it isn't as you may like, and preferable it must be reserved for modeling complicated models, and nurbs surface.

About Lena,
From what I have seen by different vendors, their services/products interpret GDL objects as Breps, which in some cases could be just fine, but for the majority of the cases it doesn't take into account to main aspect in GDL:
01. Lena's design philosophy revolves around vendors can create and control their object's in house, without the need to learn each platform specifics, that tends to result in models that overlooks models' optimisation (quiet common for GDL objects), which defeats the purpose of creating GDL in the first place.
02. GDL is slim and terse in comparison to Brep definitions, so it's easier to maintain and modify (for those who know GDL).
A good friend of mine have once told me that I´m so brute that I´m capable of creating a GDL script capable of creating GDLs.

Joe Putnam
Newcomer
A GDL editor in grasshopper & directly in rhino without grasshopper, similar to the C#, VB, and python editors would be very useful and given there are variants of GDL in other Nemetschek software I am certain the GDL parser is self contained, yes I understand wrapping the calls to rhino common would be work. GDL development live in Rhino would be really handy, and while they are at it fix the ArchiCAD built in IDE. I really believe that this being such a horrible tool is keeping the current generation of architects away from using it. Look at the explosion of Rhino user created tools and,even Revit's Dynamo, a user created open source tool that Autodesk basically got for free. The addition of the python API is a huge step in the right direction but GDL is extremely powerful and why I dont use Revit anymore but the tools are extremely cumbersome or esoteric at best.

I also think further development on the .3dm to gld tool-chain would be valuable. Wrapping in something like the library part maker that uses layers etc. but doing this from Rhino directly.

https://www.nationalbimlibrary.com/en/library-part-maker/

Currently I am producing rather complex objects (building facade screens and custom panels) that I bring in as a single gld object by placing the baked grasshopper geometry. I do not have the ability to control the data on each individual component something that is needed when documenting facade panels. I did tests sending this through with a basic custom gld script controlling parameters from grasshopper but I end up with thousands of individual objects and what I would rather have is the creation of a library with these parts within. Rhino 5 does has the option to save out library part and this is useful in this case but you have to then place each object manually......

Nader Belal
Mentor
@Joe Putnam

Don't reinvent the wheel, I see there is more future for object creation in ArchiCAD if they made something similar to what McNeel have done with Rhino, just imagine RhinoScript to be Rhino's equivilant to ArchiCAD's GDL, then Graphisoft can create a pyGDL.

But again, tell me how many time you have seen ArchiCAD users would contort his/her face when you suggest to him/her that s/he must learn GDL ???
A good friend of mine have once told me that I´m so brute that I´m capable of creating a GDL script capable of creating GDLs.

Joe Putnam
Newcomer
This is a common mistake if you ask me. One size does not fit all. Archiad is just one tool in a chain and the way to make that chain stronger is to make using Archicad easier especially in other tools. Personally I do not design anything in ArchiCad and most people I know using Revit dont design in that software either they all design in Rhino/Grasshopper and then find ways to push that into their documentation software. Personally I think that Graphisoft has recognized this and thats why they are pairing up with grasshopper and they should push that even more. What I am saying is that I actually think if they push a gdl editor into Rhino more people would use it. That user base is just more inclined to script something than your average BIM user by far. I have been at this a long while and switched to Archicad specifically because of this move by Graphisoft. I was writing these kinds of integrations for my work for a long time and it refreshing to see a company not trying to roll their own solution to a clearer better solution by a competitor.

henryL
Booster
An internal visual scripting tool is necessary and all competitor software has one. Archicad is the only one in the nemetschek family that still relies on a third party software for algoritmic design.
Joe wrote:
This is a common mistake if you ask me. One size does not fit all. Archiad is just one tool in a chain and the way to make that chain stronger is to make using Archicad easier especially in other tools. Personally I do not design anything in ArchiCad and most people I know using Revit dont design in that software either they all design in Rhino/Grasshopper and then find ways to push that into their documentation software.
I personally disagree, Archicad should not be just a documentation software.

Nader Belal
Mentor
@Joe Putnam

Please open your mind with me for a moment ...

01. How can Graphisoft gain adepts to GDL, if until now the main book of reference to learn GDL is one wrote by Mr. David Nicholsoncole from more that 20 years, and if that book wasn't available for free, I don't think that anybody would have even bothered him/her self to learn it.

02. I agree with you that Rhino/Grasshopper folk are more inclined to script than the average BIM user, but if you read my last comment, you will see that it's better for Graphisoft to create a PyGDL (Python GDL) either for ArchiCAD or for Grasshopper integration, at least it will take advantage for the actual push of learning Python, and the extensive libraries that are available (for python).

03. @Joe Putnam nice work you have done their.

04. TO all, I don't disagree with the idea of a visual interface for creating ArchiCAD BIM library objects, I disagree on how, since that all the options that were proposed in this thread blows away the prime intention that GDL was created for a parametric, small, efficient, quick and powerful file format.

05. to @Joe Putnam did you mean that ArchiCAD/Revit and analogous should always be left as a documenting BIM program only ? and why such drastic idea?
A good friend of mine have once told me that I´m so brute that I´m capable of creating a GDL script capable of creating GDLs.

leceta
Expert
I have contrary feelings on this topic. Independently of who exciting could be the possibility to write GDL directly in grasshopper, honestly, I don't think this should be a priority. Grasshopper "batteries" can be very intuitive to be used in a first glance, but they easily become a hell to be maintained. Code makes easy to write elegantly (more or less) complex logic. Elegance here is more concerned to maintainability.

Neither I can't figure out a proper way to "grasshopperize" GDL. I found horrible the idea of having each of the GDL functions with a GH component sibling! Then, what is the altenative, a .net wrapper for GDL? then what? How should be that IDE that needs a script for Parameters, other script for 2D, other for 3D... argh! GDL Ide is not such a bad thing if i consider other alternatives... It just need to be improved!

So I much more prefer an improvement on GDL Ide, rather than a strange creature living inside GH.

By the other hand, I currently find very powerful the actual approach of controlling GDL objects from Grasshopper. Are you guys using your own GDL´s this way? I don't know such a good integration between other software combo.

In my point of view, GDL is a tool for writing OBJECTS, ideally object that ignore their enviroment. I feel this in the DNA of this language. GDL objects are light and fast. By the other hand, I like to think in GH as a complement to GDL for creating Systems of GDL objects, interrelated to each other. The logic of "the system" is outside the Archicad model, so it remains being as fast as possible. For example, Revit has the problem with being so parameterized: The thing gets slow and messy.

But again, writing GDL is a pain (more text writing features would be of great help) GDL manual is a pain also (more examples are needed) By the other hand, I must admit that they have implemented pretty cool functionalities also. My feeling is that they should take again seriously the job of improving the GDL editor.

Nader Belal
Mentor
@leceta

I just want to add this:

If the problem was the GDL IDE, well there are procedures to take the code of IDL editors such as VS Code (infact I think I have seen one have already made it)

PS: by the way, Grasshopper IDE component is also horrible, but it have its perks
A good friend of mine have once told me that I´m so brute that I´m capable of creating a GDL script capable of creating GDLs.

leceta
Expert
Exactly, for example, I would like to see Runxel's Sublime Text packages functionalities implemented inside ArchiCAD.

You want GDL with Graphical Programming? Graphisoft has already a proposal on this. What is "your problem"? the fact that people are not massively using it?

By the way, you know that something similar to pyGDL is being developed. But I shouldn't expect the power of computational geometry that rhino has in their API (you mentioned rhinoscript). This is other business.

Joe Putnam
Newcomer
I actually do not have a problem with GDL in its current form other than the IDE and tools provided to write it are sub optimal at best. In fact as I said before I now use Archicad because of the power of GDL. Revit Families are garbage from my perspective. However the average Revit user can create a simple parametric Family in the 3d viewport where the average Archicad user cannot. So yes I think they should fix that and provide something like the Revit Family creator view, because this is one huge advantage Revit has over Arhicad. Take for instance Autodesk Inventor. This is a tool that can be used to design Revit MEP families, where is the equivalent tool for Archicad? I dont expect mechanical engineer to script up a new boiler because thats not how they work, they use feature based parametric cad to do their work.

Now they have this Library Part Maker but that is only available in the US if you are apart of the special fancy extra money for maintenance and services crowd. The workflow works but is poorly designed and could use some thinking if you ask me. It should also be available to anyone that pays for AchiCAD in any form FULL STOP. From what I can tell here in the US their average user base are smaller firms and mostly residential work. They are not what what I can tell places that can pay an advanced designer to script up something for them and the market share here is so bad that manufactures do not provide GDL objects. So my interest is not in something for me but rather I think the community at large needs.

As far as my interest in GDL grasshopper I just want to use it the same way I use the c# component. Write some code, expose some parameter and move on. Now that you have me really thinking about this I dont thin it would be that hard, other than the fact that the GDL IDE in Archicad is probably legacy code and doesnt work like any of the newer UI. For the most part the Grasshopper Components make calls back to Archiad and use the native API to open Archicad dialog s. They could do the same with a GDL component. Especially if they provided a new updated IDE. So in effect they would not need anything specific to Rhino.

If by working on it you mean the python beta then yes I am aware and in fact am apart of it, testing and writing my own scripts. I is not "pyGDL" it is a wrapper of the C++ API and it is exactly what they should be doing.

If there is some other form of "pyGD" that you are speaking of a reference would be great!

Joe Putnam
Newcomer
"I personally disagree, Archicad should not be just a documentation software."

Sorry Henry not trying to offend.

Maybe not but at least in the workflows I use and most of what I have seen out there doing similar work this is how its done. Now with the integration to Grasshopper and Rhino I am finding that I am using BIM sooner, and most of my models are Frankensteins of a few software packages. To me this is power as I get the right tool for every job. You dont use a hammer to cut a board in half.

leceta
Expert
For the most part the Grasshopper Components make calls back to Archiad and use the native API to open Archicad dialog s. They could do the same with a GDL component. Especially if they provided a new updated IDE. So in effect they would not need anything specific to Rhino.
sounds good, but if you are not happy with the current IDE, then what we could expect in GH... I would be happy to jump to ArchiCAD to write some code if a proper coding enviroment is waiting...

yes I meant the python API, "pyGDL" is a term adopted from this conversation

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