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PARAM-O development roadmap? (with Survey)

Anonymous
Not applicable
[Note by Moderator: Please make sure to fill out the Development Survey. Link to the Survey can be found in the 3rd post of this topic.]


Since PARAM-O is described as a technology demo of sorts, what is the development roadmap for this plugin?

There are a number of GDL elements that are not implemented yet and I am curious what is the development outlook for such a useful tool as PARAM-O?
32 REPLIES 32

I would hope that GS is not trying to catch up with Rhino/GH for "formal, architectural design" functionality. I would rather improve a lot more the AC-Grasshopper Connection for that use cases - like that second topic her: https://www.rhino3d.com/7/new/

I see PARAM-O more as a tool to structure objects in hierarchies with capabilities for scheduling and geometrical flexibility - like an enhanced version the family editor of Revit.
AC24 4018 INT, Win10, Quadro P2000, Xeon, BIMCloud

leceta
Expert
GH is a interface for Rhino API.

We should expect the same from param-O. IMO trying to mimic GH functionality because they "look the same thing" it's a mistake.

By the other hand, Archicad exposes multiple API, and reading what people is expecting from param-O, it seems that people expects an UI only for GDL API: i.e. a tool for developing geometry. Nothing wrong with this. Just don't expect the power of Rhino's geometry engine. McNeel spent decades working on this.

Now, what about the rest of the API's? what about managing documentation, attributes, issues, connecting Archicad with external app (Excel, PowerBI) or the WWW...

Programming geometry is very cool, but in the end of the day, it doesn't fit well in production. Projects changes a lot and maintaining an algorithm according to these changes is extremely tricky. Spaguetti mosters et al.

Managing information, that's the real deal IMO.

Mjules
Advisor
How long has Graphisoft spent to develop ArchiCAD? It has started working on that “parametric software” since 1980s.
Martin Luther Jules
AC 10-25 (Full)
Alienware | 64 GB RAM | Windows 10

leceta
Expert
Archicad also has been developed "for decades", sure.

The difference is that McNeel has been developing mainly the "geometry engine" while Archicad's is a BIM tool (documentation, collaboration, issue management, IFC support... In comparison, Rhino's support for all these functionalities is (almost) inexistent.

But geometry in Archicad is mainly based on primitive solids and discretized curves. And this is ok IMO. Good enough for 99% of the architectural projects. Digital Project from Ghery technologies was developed to support the geometry limitations of BIM tools like ArchiCAD.

Rhno and Archicad. Two apps, two purposes.

By the way, Archicad is already 'very' parametric software, isn't it? Certainly, not the same explicit parametric modelling paradigm as in Digital Projects, for example, but still parametric. Maybe you are looking for a different app?

brayan henrique
Contributor
Certainly, Param-o need not follow the same path as the Rhino with the Grasshopper with decades of development, and spend all the energy on manipulating geometry.
But the BIM "I" information is missing (and it is extremely necessary). For now it is possible to build simple "M" models in Param-o, I believe that small and simple implementations to extract information can add a lot to the application.

---> 1 - Extract lists of these geometries;
1.1 - number of pieces;
1.1.1 - dimensions of the parts;
1.1.2 - orientation of the parts;
1.1.3 - surface of the pieces;
"" 1.1.4 "-" material "of the pieces;"

(We already have a way to make lists like that with doors and windows. But now would be a good time to expand the details with a magnifying glass and refine the precision, to be able to participate in the construction of building elements)
(and probably the archicad already has this "list", because in order to be able to draw the elements on the screen, it probably needs this "list")

---> 2 - To be able to add "materials" to these geometries and validate point 1.1.4. (ok this is a little irrelevant, but it would be good to generate plans, and budgets)

These solutions are simple and of great advancement in the application.
The "I" information of the "M" model enables the "B" construction. In short, we will have BIM within Param-o.


leceta wrote:
Archicad also has been developed "for decades", sure.

The difference is that McNeel has been developing mainly the "geometry engine" while Archicad's is a BIM tool (documentation, collaboration, issue management, IFC support... In comparison, Rhino's support for all these functionalities is (almost) inexistent.

But geometry in Archicad is mainly based on primitive solids and discretized curves. And this is ok IMO. Good enough for 99% of the architectural projects. Digital Project from Ghery technologies was developed to support the geometry limitations of BIM tools like ArchiCAD.

Rhno and Archicad. Two apps, two purposes.

By the way, Archicad is already 'very' parametric software, isn't it? Certainly, not the same explicit parametric modelling paradigm as in Digital Projects, for example, but still parametric. Maybe you are looking for a different app?


Just a point of note...

Digital Project is actually a repurposed version of CATIA - which was actually developed and initially released earlier than ArchiCAD.
(it was developed in '77 and initially released in 1982)
Frank Gehry's company was the one that first used CATIA in the late '80's/early '90's to help him design and realize the famous Guggenheim Bilbao Museum, and in the late 1990's they repurposed the software in-house to help them design buildings and designs with that curvilinear style and irregular form and to end up with what's now known as Digital Project.

furtonb
Expert
PARAM-O looks like a proof of concept plugin at the moment with quite limited functionality. When can we expect the macOS release? Are further nodes planned?
https://helpcenter.graphisoft.com/user-guide-chapter/85692/

Right now both the GH-connection and PARAM-O is half-baked in my experience. Rhino.Inside.Revit looks extremely powerful in comparison, having a robust connection to the Rhino-GH ecosystem is a getting invaluable, prototyping custom tools or workflows for ARCHICAD has a very high threshold compared to it.

Accessing and mixing building material-, object- and project level properties and attributes, passing parameters based on context is not really doable in either solution right now.
actively using: AC22-25 INT | Rhino6-7 | macOS / win10

Karl Ottenstein
Moderator
furtonb wrote:
When can we expect the macOS release?

PARAM-O for Mac is included in the AC 24 Update 5000 preview announced here:

https://archicad-talk.graphisoft.com/viewtopic.php?f=10&t=72095
One of the forum moderators   •   AC 25 USA and earlier   •   MacOS 11.6.5, iMac Pro

furtonb
Expert
Thanks for the update, Karl! I hope to take a closer look at it finally.
actively using: AC22-25 INT | Rhino6-7 | macOS / win10

Jim Allen
Booster
I am a Mac user and have been waiting for this ever since it was announced.

I have already built a few components in a matter of a day.

However there are a few features I think would make life a little easier.

1. Display of variable/number values
Sometimes, when components are not behaving as expected, it would be nice to see exactly what values are being passed

2. Display of axes and origin
It is easy to lose track of exactly where these things are, having a visual display would be much easier

3. Logical operators
It would be nice to have conditional statements to use with the parameters, so that based on some values, we could set others. This is useful for validating user input. I'm building a spur shelving component and it would be good to set a minimum value for the height of the shelves. There is a balance to be struck between the overall height and spacing of the shelves, so there is a conflict between shelf numbers, spacing and height. The only way I can find of resolving this is to use logical statements to filter the inputs.

4. More options for list input of values
I don't know how to configure user input so that it is limited to a list of variables. When we are designing components for others to use, it can be easier if some components have plain text options for input which translate to numeric equivalents. For example if I want to configure washtrough heights, it's easier if we allow users to choose the age group, and have the parameters filled in automatically. Otherwise they will have to look up what the recommendations are. Currently I can't find any way of doing this. Also - some numeric series do not necessarily have consistent intervals. I don't know how we can deal with this either.

5. Option to increase number of decimal places displayed.
Units are metres, so parts parameters often need to work to 4 decimal places. Having Param-o round these up in the display is really unhelpful.

6. Indicator to show which variables are user-configurable parameters
When you have lots of variables, it can be nice to be able to see at a glance which ones are user-configurable. This could be a different colour/shade dialog or even a graphical indicator.

7. Facility to add notes/comments to nodes
Node trees can get very complex very quickly, and it can be tricky to keep track of what you are doing at what stage. The ability to show or hide explanatory comments would help in development a lot I think.

Minh Nguyen
Graphisoft Moderator
Graphisoft Moderator
Jim wrote:
I am a Mac user and have been waiting for this ever since it was announced.

I have already built a few components in a matter of a day.

However there are a few features I think would make life a little easier.

1. Display of variable/number values
Sometimes, when components are not behaving as expected, it would be nice to see exactly what values are being passed

2. Display of axes and origin
It is easy to lose track of exactly where these things are, having a visual display would be much easier

3. Logical operators
It would be nice to have conditional statements to use with the parameters, so that based on some values, we could set others. This is useful for validating user input. I'm building a spur shelving component and it would be good to set a minimum value for the height of the shelves. There is a balance to be struck between the overall height and spacing of the shelves, so there is a conflict between shelf numbers, spacing and height. The only way I can find of resolving this is to use logical statements to filter the inputs.

4. More options for list input of values
I don't know how to configure user input so that it is limited to a list of variables. When we are designing components for others to use, it can be easier if some components have plain text options for input which translate to numeric equivalents. For example if I want to configure washtrough heights, it's easier if we allow users to choose the age group, and have the parameters filled in automatically. Otherwise they will have to look up what the recommendations are. Currently I can't find any way of doing this. Also - some numeric series do not necessarily have consistent intervals. I don't know how we can deal with this either.

5. Option to increase number of decimal places displayed.
Units are metres, so parts parameters often need to work to 4 decimal places. Having Param-o round these up in the display is really unhelpful.

6. Indicator to show which variables are user-configurable parameters
When you have lots of variables, it can be nice to be able to see at a glance which ones are user-configurable. This could be a different colour/shade dialog or even a graphical indicator.

7. Facility to add notes/comments to nodes
Node trees can get very complex very quickly, and it can be tricky to keep track of what you are doing at what stage. The ability to show or hide explanatory comments would help in development a lot I think.
Hi Jim,

Thank you very much for feedback on PARAM-O and we really appreciate the time you've taken to contribute towards the development of this new tool.

I have entered your comments and suggestions into our Wish List database (please refer to it as 13055). Hopefully, our Product Management team will consider implementing them in the future.

Thank you once again, and have a great day!

Best regards,
Minh

Minh Nguyen
Technical Support Engineer
GRAPHISOFT

Karl Ottenstein
Moderator
A side-conversation about free-form modeling started to take over this thread - so I split it off into its own topic in the Archicad+ forum, since it has nothing to do with library parts, and PARAM-O in particular. If you were part of that conversation, please go here:

https://archicad-talk.graphisoft.com/viewtopic.php?f=10&t=72689

Please keep this thread 100% focused on the current status of PARAM-O and the roadmap for the development / improvement of what PARAM-O is intentended to be: a graphical library part development tool. 🙂
One of the forum moderators   •   AC 25 USA and earlier   •   MacOS 11.6.5, iMac Pro

Karl Ottenstein
Moderator
scraptrash wrote:
I’ve a general question about GDL I have in mind for some time.

Why there is no 2-way interactive graphical object modeling interface for GDL?
By interactive interface, instead having to input the coordinates either in GDL or param-o viewport, graphical viewport can also let me draw a cube as easy as in archicad project and the GDL code is immediately generated interactively. Then I can manipulate the codes and the graphical viewport changes accordingly.
Please keep this topic 100% focused on PARAM-O. Any new topics should be... you guessed it... started in a NEW topic/thread. 🙂 Thank you 🙂

To the extent that your wish for modeling using Tracker or Coordinate Palette input could be a wish for PARAM-O, what tools would you expect in the window? How would you link any aspects of the modeled mass to parameters to make a parametric object? (Do note that you can toggle a view of the GDL code on in the PARAM-O window in the right panel so that you do see the dynamic code changing as you describe.)
One of the forum moderators   •   AC 25 USA and earlier   •   MacOS 11.6.5, iMac Pro

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