Wishes
Post your wishes about Graphisoft products: Archicad, BIMx, BIMcloud, and DDScad.

Element Visibility Control

 

When modeling I often feel hamstrung by a lack of control over the visibility of elements in model space which can be traced to the fact that its tied to layers. 

 

Ignoring any discussion about layers raison d'être in todays object oriented applications I just note that its strange to rely on a coarse and rigid structure as layers for visibility when we have access to a much finer and flexible selection functionality. 

 

At the same time there are functionalities already in place that undermines the hegemony of layers regarding visibility.

 

  • We can hide elements in 3D by type.
  • We can hide elements in 3D by selection.
  • We can hide elements in both 2D and 3D by renovation filters.

 

I would like to see a effort to consolidate all this control functionality in to one tool and base it on the same logic as the Find & Select tool.

 

My rather spontaneous concept idea for intuitive visibility control is a toggle between 'Show All' and 'Hide All' with an exception/inversion list based on Criterion Sets or Criterion Set Combinations. 

 

Show All

Hide All

-----------------------------

Exception/Inversion

Criteria Set 1

Criteria Set 2

Criteria Set ...

 

Another functionality that would be useful is the ability to set hidden elements as reference - locking and fading/wireframing/x-raying them.  

  • UI
45 REPLIES 45
stefan
Expert

Hiding based on criteria is different from "hiding a selection" (which is uncontrollable). I personally feel the Graphic Override provides the whole toolset, but maybe having a filter/hide thing alongside it is more flexible in the end. 

 

Layers don't suffice. You can't hide doors using a layer. You can't show only the walls that have a fire rating of 60 minutes. You can mimic this with 'almost invisible' graphic override, but this is not efficient and does not help to define a filtered view you can use for e.g. IFC export.

--- stefan boeykens --- bim-expert-architect-engineer-musician ---
Archicad26/Revit2023/Rhino7/Unity/Solibri/Zoom
MBP2023:14"M2MAX/Ventura+Win11
ARCHICAD-user since 1998
Archicad Book

Yes - GOs really showcase the power of the already implemented criteria functionality but sadly also GSs shortsightedness. As you mention - this is not just about appearance but rather about inclusion/exclusion of data and a distinction between what is included in the view of the model and how it is drawn has to be kept. But the introduction of a true invisibility would offer quick relief.

stefan
Expert

Like a "Graphic Override" but let's call it a "Visibility Override". (The Filters in Revit come to mind, as are the Smart Views in BIMcollab Zoom)

--- stefan boeykens --- bim-expert-architect-engineer-musician ---
Archicad26/Revit2023/Rhino7/Unity/Solibri/Zoom
MBP2023:14"M2MAX/Ventura+Win11
ARCHICAD-user since 1998
Archicad Book

With the implementation of design options in AC27 there now is yet another way to control (and need to keep track of) element visibility in both 2D and 3D without any flicker of consolidation effort. The constant addition of other means to control visibility makes it obvious that layers no longer are suitable for it. Criteria already have a central role in AC and extending it to element visibility would not only be intuitive and familiar but would through consolidation reduce the effort needed to keep track of where and why elements are shown/hidden.

And now it is possible to achieve something like this in model space using design options but it is far from an efficient workflow. The fragmented development of GS is quite worrying - instead delivering a consolidated and modern approach to visibility would be sign of things going in the right direction.

DGSketcher
Legend

Let me be clear here, I'm not advocating everyone migrates to Sketchup. Unfortunately it did gain a lot of bad press under Google's ownership as they choked development before they sold it to Trimble. But a few months ago I had to buy a new SU licence to assist an associate with their workload. Ok, it's nowhere near as advanced as AC, but there again the price of entry is also very different. But what has hit me apart from the fact SU has had component instancing forever, is that SU is quietly moving forward with a workflow that is based on element visibility Tags & Attributes that can be nested in the components and can be labelled in Layout. Imagine that, components and sub components that can be globally updated together with their descriptive attributes all within the same model.

 

Many a company has collapsed through complacency, GS need to start looking over their shoulder. And as a side issue, SU just got an AI Diffusion render option. Funny thing is their support forum doesn't seem to have lit up with errors, there are many images and possibly a consensus of "Nice idea but perhaps not something you want to pass to your client". So another good example of GS wandering off path and up a blind alley. 

Apple iMac Intel i9 / macOS Sonoma / AC27UKI (most recent builds.. if they work)

It indeed feels like AC is a strong enough release from Rhino/Blender/perhaps even SU away from irrelevance for a lot of users - a rather strange position for a company with a posture of being a market leader. And what's even stranger is that most of the needed functionality is already implemented in one form or another - element visibility being an extreme example. But look at the railing and curtain wall tool for arrayed/associative placement. Look at IFC manager and model compare for element management/information entities. Instead of generalising this tech which would really take AC leaps forward GS try to update a discipline specific feature and fail miserably in doing so... The kind interpretation of this situation is that the legacy code just is too complex and that AC is basically dead in the water until that changes - the other is that GS is completely ignorant not only of what AC should be but also what it is.


@thesleepofreason wrote:

The kind interpretation of this situation is that the legacy code just is too complex and that AC is basically dead in the water until that changes - the other is that GS is completely ignorant not only of what AC should be but also what it is.


Until recently GS had the willing & free support of some users offering decades of AC experience and design knowledge in exchange for a better product. They carried a shared knowledge of how AC worked in the past and how it could be improved. That was shut down and redefined as the Insiders with promises of development engagement. From what I am seeing the only engagement here is for trivia like Distance Guides, not some seismic shift to boost workflows & documentation productivity. There is an old statement that "If you put an infinite number of monkeys in front of a typewriter, one of them will eventually write the complete works of Shakespeare." However, you can't half fill one room with programmers, however talented (and I know they are), and expect them to create the perfect piece of architectural software if their only point of reference is "Architecture for Dummies".  For AC to be a success it doesn't only need to cover the front end of concept design, it needs an effective workflow that progresses through the complete design process including fabric analysis, quantities, assembly details, and annotation. 

Apple iMac Intel i9 / macOS Sonoma / AC27UKI (most recent builds.. if they work)

@DGSketcher wrote:
There is an old statement that "If you put an infinite number of monkeys in front of a typewriter, one of them will eventually write the complete works of Shakespeare." However, you can't half fill one room with programmers, however talented (and I know they are), and expect them to create the perfect piece of architectural software if their only point of reference is "Architecture for Dummies". 

No - GS seem to be stuck in "it was the best of times, it was the blurst of times" situation 😉

 

A reference to one of the best Simpsons scenes: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=no_elVGGgW8

Dont even need to click the link to know what scene it is 😅

 

and here is another one from someone they might know at Graphisoft.  They should listen a little bit more.

 

https://www.tiktok.com/@everythingfinance1_/video/7213440922774785285

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