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Open Source Tools / Open BIM

vazkez
Newcomer
This discussion gets very interesting. I sense a lot of frustration from ArchiCAD user community. I also share that frustration and it is less about terrible new ArchiCAD release and more about diminishing faith that ArchiCAD is the best industry solution for the next x years.
Just a thought that maybe the reality of feasible business model for professional software companies is shifting and Graphisoft (Nemetschek) are too big to be able to adapt.

In many other professional fields new software packages that are super affordable (or free of charge) challenge the giants. Film post-production industry is a good example. New release of Davinci Resolve is equally good (better?) than Adobe Premier and it is completely free. We have Blender in 3D modeling business that in many areas outshines 3D Studio Max and it is completely free!
I am sure there are other cases among different professional fields that pave the way to new business models that will push professional software development further on.

Maybe sooner or later we might expect a new kid on the block that will change the game. What do you think about that?
24 REPLIES 24

Duncan Lithgow
Newcomer
Hi everyone. I was pointed to this discussion by a friend on the osarch.org forum ( https://community.osarch.org ) where we were discussing the problems with current software and how to fund alternatives. He thought this thread here might be interested in what we're doing.

Basically, very basically, we're working to strengthen opensource / libre software projects in AEC. I did an interview recently with Ralph Grabowski where you can read a bit about us ( https://upfrontezine.substack.com/p/upfrontezine-1103-open-source-architecture )

oh dear ... now I was going to start referencing people in this discussion by their user name so they'd get a notification ... I guess graphisoft hasn't updated their forum software for a while ...

Podolsky, you mentioned writing a letter expressing users frustrations and DGSketcher wonders if this would make a difference. I agree with Bricklyne Clarence that it has made a difference (I'm a Revit user at my day job). One difference it seems to have made is with some more openness. If you do want to write something I've created a page on our wiki for people on this forum, you are welcome to use to do some collaborative writing on a letter expressing your concerns: https://wiki.osarch.org/index.php?title=Talk:ArchiCAD&action=edit&section=1 ( you may want to help on other pages on the wiki as well )

What interests me in your discussion most is ideas about supporting projects bringing new ideas in developing designs for AEC. Over at OSArch we're doing lots of work, and supporting lots of work, doing exactly this. We'd love to hear from anyone who thinks this sounds interesting. Two examples of projects looking at solving similar challenges to ArchiCAD are BlenderBIM ( https://wiki.osarch.org/index.php?title=BlenderBIM_Add-on ) Add-on and FreeCAD ( https://wiki.osarch.org/index.php?title=FreeCAD ). Don't get me wrong - these are not replacements. They can do parts of what ArchiCAD does very well and much they cannot so at all. But maybe single big software packages are on the way out anyway ...

Here's my elevator pitch for why you should be interested in what we're doing:

The old software firms have dropped the ball and just make small changes to old platforms. They only support interoperability when it suits them and try and keep us locked to their product. Smaller, faster, more focused projects and developers can achieve more with less. Binding tools together with OpenBIM standards and opensource software ensures that progress and interoperability is guaranteed. Any components in your toolchain can be replaced by something better if it comes along because all the software sourcecode is open - no one can trap you with their file format or guarded proprietary tools.

So, what do people think? Is this interesting or should we keep trusting and relying on the current projects to keep us productive and relevant in our field?

Podolsky
Newcomer
Duncan wrote:
Hi everyone. I was pointed to this discussion by a friend on the osarch.org forum ( https://community.osarch.org ) where we were discussing the problems with current software and how to fund alternatives. He thought this thread here might be interested in what we're doing.

Basically, very basically, we're working to strengthen opensource / libre software projects in AEC. I did an interview recently with Ralph Grabowski where you can read a bit about us ( https://upfrontezine.substack.com/p/upfrontezine-1103-open-source-architecture )

oh dear ... now I was going to start referencing people in this discussion by their user name so they'd get a notification ... I guess graphisoft hasn't updated their forum software for a while ...

Podolsky, you mentioned writing a letter expressing users frustrations and DGSketcher wonders if this would make a difference. I agree with Bricklyne Clarence that it has made a difference (I'm a Revit user at my day job). One difference it seems to have made is with some more openness. If you do want to write something I've created a page on our wiki for people on this forum, you are welcome to use to do some collaborative writing on a letter expressing your concerns: https://wiki.osarch.org/index.php?title=Talk:ArchiCAD&action=edit&section=1 ( you may want to help on other pages on the wiki as well )

What interests me in your discussion most is ideas about supporting projects bringing new ideas in developing designs for AEC. Over at OSArch we're doing lots of work, and supporting lots of work, doing exactly this. We'd love to hear from anyone who thinks this sounds interesting. Two examples of projects looking at solving similar challenges to ArchiCAD are BlenderBIM ( https://wiki.osarch.org/index.php?title=BlenderBIM_Add-on ) Add-on and FreeCAD ( https://wiki.osarch.org/index.php?title=FreeCAD ). Don't get me wrong - these are not replacements. They can do parts of what ArchiCAD does very well and much they cannot so at all. But maybe single big software packages are on the way out anyway ...

Here's my elevator pitch for why you should be interested in what we're doing:

The old software firms have dropped the ball and just make small changes to old platforms. They only support interoperability when it suits them and try and keep us locked to their product. Smaller, faster, more focused projects and developers can achieve more with less. Binding tools together with OpenBIM standards and opensource software ensures that progress and interoperability is guaranteed. Any components in your toolchain can be replaced by something better if it comes along because all the software sourcecode is open - no one can trap you with their file format or guarded proprietary tools.

So, what do people think? Is this interesting or should we keep trusting and relying on the current projects to keep us productive and relevant in our field?
This is probably the best answer on this thread to all frustrations user showed. Yes, open source projects are one of the best alternatives we currently know in computer world. Of course a lot been done by commercial software development companies, but the open source software always appeared as lifebuoy during crises. Apple adopted UNIX FreeBSD as their MacOS core, Microsoft now moving into support of Linux and of course excellent example how Blender grew up into serious 3D platform in past several years, becoming strong competitor to packages like 3DS Max, Maya, Cinema 4D and similar.
We always lived in the world, where common rules applies - you can mess with free software, but if you want to have serious business - pay money. Annual prescriptions were as a guarantee of stable state of the art software solution, with knowledgeable technical support and the whole infrastructure AEC software giants are providing us. But at some moment of time anyone can ask - is it really true? When we are paying to life insurance company - does this process preventing us from accidents and disasters? Then finally fees, that goes to the company-developer, do we know how they distributed? There is a big network of sales managers, offices, representatives, call centres, that need to be funded - infrastructure, that aim to provide better communication with users, but not related to actual development process. Then let say if we imagine, that 50% of money, paid for software, goes to the company, that sales you a software; then 30% pays to companies bureaucratical machine, 10% to advertising and maybe 5% goes to salaries of programmers, who actually are working on real developments. And users got frustrated - I'm paying them a lot of money - why they still cannot fix it! The answer can be very simple - programmers are receiving very little from what been paid and real developers team is very very small to compare to amount of people just involved into selling and advertising process. Then the annual prescription can be just to pay for brand, that works more less the same way as insurance companies. I'm not saying that numbers I'm providing here are correct - I simply don't know - it just imaginary model. But I know for sure that ArchiCAD distribution network (at least 20 years ago) did work this way - company that sales you ArchiCAD is getting half. Maybe this model been taken from old Apple distribution network, because we know that Steve Jobs helped Graphisoft to establish ArchiCAD distribution worldwide, but please do not forget, that Apple since there had bad time and needed to reorganise almost everything - from computers architecture, OS, how they sale their product...
Because this is not government driven service or business, we cannot require complete transparency of finance distribution, development roadmaps or any direct responses. It's private business and information can stay private. We cannot say nothing about corruption level (when corruption can destroy even powerful countries like Rome empire) - we cannot say for sure about nothing, because we don't have information (and shouldn't have it).

Of course Open Source projects give the best alternative to all that - it's just gigs, that really do things, it's totally free and anyone can take our codes, take a look, modify and join to our development.

What big AEC software companies do have, that is not catched yet my Open Source projects - it's specific and stable platform, where all operations happens. Graphisoft was developing their platform more then 30 years, Revit - about 20 years and similar. The platform is like small operative system with virtual 3d space, working planes, main database, bunch of different settings to manage all this, API and internal programming language (GDL for example). So I might say the platform is a little bit different from one or another tool or feature we are looking at - it is a background that let the tool operate. But here is rising another discussion - which platform is better? Funny enough, we all have one common reality, where we live, work and rest - it's a same 'platform' we are building buildings with the same gravity and law of physic, with materials that are the same around the world, but in computer we need to choose which world simulation is better. And after we have chosen our virtual world we must continue to believe, that our choice was right.

It's sometimes even comic how terms like OpenBIM or Common Data Environment are not really open and not really common. If company A is using CDE called B and company C is using CDE called D - they are working in totally different working environment, that is is not common for both A and C. If OpenBIM means we can use file format, open for all AEC platforms - IFC in this case, then why this IFC can be interpreted by various platforms differently and even loose some data? It's like having a movie, that preferable to watch on Mac, because on Windows it has glitches and actors all have green faces - this is what quite often happens with IFC.

Let see where all that will bring us.

Duncan Lithgow
Newcomer
Your comments on IFC & OpenBIM point at part of the problem. I expect that ArchiCAD has been big in supporting OpenBIM & IFC because they needed interoperability to compete with other larger platforms. The promise of OpenBIM is being met by OpenSource BIM - only with open source in BIM is there true openness. Only with open source in BIM can you know if your IFC is actually representing your project correctly. And what about native IFC? Blender BIM doesn't export IFC - it's the native format. That's IFC at a whole different level. I'm not going to wait and see what happens, I'm actively working for a change, and welcome anyone curious about what OSArch is doing to come and say hi. Our software directory is full of interesting things and our forum is happy to discuss whatever is on your mind about BIM & AEC Tech.

One thing you mentioned was how ArchiCAD & Revit have tried to be complete packages. I don't think that the way forward. If we truly support openbim is doesn't need to be. Different software packages can work on the same file and each bring their strength to the project. "Suddenly" we have the promise of your preferred tool for the job being as much a part of a project as any other tool. The HVAC engineer can use their favorite tool, the architect uses theirs - and they don't have to agree on software - they just agree on openbim data structures. Speckle and LadyBug are each addressing parts of this problem in their own way. They are two superstar projects of open source in architecture.

Eduardo Rolon
Moderator
Duncan, I think that that was the slogan for Archicad 20.
eduardo rolón AIA NCARB
Another of the forum moderators.
Macbook Pro 2.4 i9 32GB ram
OS X 10.XX latest
AC25 US/INT -> AC08

torben_wadlinger
Contributor
TMA_80 wrote:
Considering how things are going on, my expectaion is that for the next version, the M1 compatiblity will be the 'lonely' feature
Well, I don't think so. AC depends on MongoDB as it's database core and MongoDB is still not native M1 (and won't be before August 8th):
https://www.mongodb.com/community/forums/t/support-for-apple-m1-silicon/12442
https://jira.mongodb.org/browse/SERVER-42427

Moult
Newcomer
It's sometimes even comic how terms like OpenBIM or Common Data Environment are not really open and not really common. If company A is using CDE called B and company C is using CDE called D - they are working in totally different working environment, that is is not common for both A and C. If OpenBIM means we can use file format, open for all AEC platforms - IFC in this case, then why this IFC can be interpreted by various platforms differently and even loose some data? It's like having a movie, that preferable to watch on Mac, because on Windows it has glitches and actors all have green faces - this is what quite often happens with IFC.
Hey there, I'm the developer of the BlenderBIM Add-on, and have been working with Native IFC for a few years now. I thought I'd help shed some insight on your statement.

For any digital system to integrate, they need a shared protocol or language. If the language is proprietary, like the .Rvt format or .Dwg, your options are to purchase, or reverse engineer (and potentially be sued). Open protocols and languages, like OpenBIM and OpenCDE, are free for everybody to implement, inspect, and improve. From a technical perspective, of the two options, the open option is better.

Unfortunately, the impression of open given to users is often quite poor - and this is expected. Our industry is not actually using OpenBIM! When you export an IFC file, you are not using OpenBIM ... you are still using your proprietary, traditional BIM system, which you then translate into OpenBIM. This is akin to having a conversation with two people using Google Translate - of course there will be translation errors. The more complex your BIM data, the bigger or more unexpected the translation errors will be. From users who are living within the bubble of Traditional closed BIM vendors, the only OpenBIM they experience is Translated OpenBIM, a poor substitute for the real thing. Within ArchiCAD, there are dozens of dialog boxes and translators and options for the user to attempt to get a better translation, but unfortunately ... it remains a translation.

This is not necessarily Graphisoft's fault. Traditional BIM vendors have spent decades building a strong foundation and don't want to cast it away for a new OpenBIM-based core. Sometimes, translation is really difficult, and they do the best they can, but due to technical reasons due to the legacy Traditional BIM core, they cannot reach a good solution. Sometimes, they aren't paid to work on it - their priority is traditional BIM, and OpenBIM is a low priority for them. So there are numerous bugs in their implementations, and nobody is paid to fix it, and nobody can volunteer to fix it since they are proprietary. Also, sometimes it is user error - users have an incredibly poor understanding of how OpenBIM should work... because they are never actually exposed to it. They are instead only exposed to translation options. Imagine trying to speak a language well but you've never learned it natively and your only options are to tweak numerous settings in your online translation software.

The end result is that the only viable technical solution to natively integrated digital systems is given a poor reputation ... by the Traditional BIM vendors.

Our industry needs to move past this superficial game of integrating using Traditional BIM and Translated BIM. We need to move to Native OpenBIM.

How do we solve this? We can wait for vendors to do something, and hope that they do what we hope they will do. Or, we can start just building stuff ourselves using Native OpenBIM. Yes, it will be slow. Yes, we will have 20 years of catch-up to achieve first. But at the same time, right now, the most advanced OpenBIM developer systems are all 100% free and open source. This is our best chance at changing the industry, permanently. If we crack it, Traditional BIM will forever be a thing of the past, and we will be in full native control of our digital systems. This migration has happened already in other industries. It will happen to the AEC industry, because open source software always builds up over time. The question is, how fast will this change happen, and will you help accelerate it?

P.S. I didn't talk much about CDEs. CDEs right now are all closed from an open data perspective. People advertising an "Open API" to say they are open are misusing the term (which actually means "Public API") as an advertising trick. There is a new initiative to actually fix this called OpenCDE, but it is incredibly immature right now, and from what systems I've built and seen with OpenCDE so far, it's not yet there. If anybody advertises OpenCDE right now to you, they are probably lying.

Hope it helps.

Moult
Newcomer
Apologies for the double post (see previous post on page before), but I wanted to add a further comment on the completeness of a BIM package.

All Traditional BIM packages right now are incomplete by design. This is a sad fact. It may seem complete from the perspective of your discipline (e.g. as an architect), but when seen from the perspective of the entire lifecycle of our digital built environment, from design to construction to teardown across all disciplines, Traditional BIM tools are grotesquely incomplete. This incompleteness is by design. ArchiCAD was not designed to be a costing tool. ArchiCAD's database was not designed for material lifecycle systems analysis.

OpenBIM standards are designed from the beginning to be complete and holistic. IFC, for example, natively supports not only parametric architecture and engineering elements, but also cost planning, construction scheduling, lighting simulation, designed environmental properties, structural analysis, permits and liability tracking, facility management, maintenance and operations, assets and inventory systems, GIS, geolocation and horizontal construction, civil alignments & infra, and a hint of LCA.

Given the huge scope of this, it is unsurprising that Traditional BIM software which are incomplete by design to only implement partial Translations to OpenBIM. It is also the reason why IFC development takes longer ... building a wall tool is easy ... but building a wall tool that ingrates across all these disciplines correctly takes a great deal more care.

Looking past siloed Traditional BIM apps, if we want to digitally integrate fully across disciplines in the future in our built environment, there is no other choice that we have as an industry. Most vendors have no interest in covering all these scopes and integration via partial translations are and will always be flakey at best. There are a few vendors who are already pushing this (Bexel, ACCA, GeometryGym) but progress is slow. Most users are not even aware that OpenBIM has been designed for this full scope and it is already possible today to use Native OpenBIM this way. If you think you had a poor experience using imports and exports within your disciplines, wait until you try it across the full breadth of disciplines. We as users need to look past vendors and apps and start taking a data-centric approach to our digital built environment systems.

Just my 2 cents, I hope it covered an aspect that is lesser discussed in vendor-specific forums.

Podolsky
Newcomer
I want to remind, that Revit is not completely built on IFC as a core. IFC was created by Autodesk but as re-designing US military STEP classification. When Revit been bought by Autodesk, started work on IFC integration.
This is typical problem of main vendors - they somehow ignoring common rules and inventing their own. Funny enough that none of modern commercial platforms simply are not following national CAD standards.
Also it is obvious, that developing Open Source is much easier and it cuts several potentially idiotic and unsolvable problems caused by human greed. Any Open Source got founding. But money from this founding are not split between managers, offices, banks and agencies. Today BIM first at all is commercial swindle, but people cannot figure out how to make money of that. BIM started to suck money of their users giving promise that it happens tomorrow. Every time when I have conversation over the phone with recruitment agent, who want me to hang on paying him 30% - I'm wondering what happens in his head - why his got this formula Revit=BIM. I could imagine such a person can 'sell' position in Open Source and would like to get his 30% from that also. Very possible why projects like Cheesegrater by Rogers - where all subcontractors lost money - constantly facing to financial disasters, as anyone moving forward through the businesses, that always trying to rob someone. Maybe, the more we are rising value in life of money, the more power we are giving to corruption, that leads to self-destruction.
In this terms OS more reminds socialistic society - this typical non-commercial institution, that by the way was very efficient and, actually from where Graphisoft appeared.
It is definitely much more beneficial to use IFC as a core of program. I had an idea in to have native IFC support on BIM Cloud - then this becoming really BIM cloud - when anyone can connect with any program and be part of TeamWork.
I think global 'TeamWork' - as universal Internet protocol (language, technology) - like today HTML - must be essential for real OpenBIM.

bouhmidage
Enthusiast
The stair tool, railing tool, shell, new column and beam, curtain wall, theese all redesigned tools are more compatible to ifc exchange, graphisoft tries to make balance between good design options and a robust ifc translation.
We have a lot of wishes that may look easy to realise for us, but, for programmers, surely there is complications of how the tool should work, and how the created geometry should be exported \ imported
When graphisoft introduced the opening tool, openings have their own ifc class, it can be exported as a real opening, for us, architects, it's a simple hole in a wall\slab, but in reality, that hole have to be parametric and smart enough to keep it's parameters when exporting with ifc.
I'm sure there is a lot of good features i the near future, wall, doors and windows, all tools will e updated, with more ifc compatibility,
Openbim is the future of AEC despite the efforts made by autodesk to encourage closed bim and make revit the only bim tool
AMD Ryzen 9 3900X, 32 GB RAM, RTX 3080 10 GB

Archicad 23

Windows 10 professional

https://www.behance.net/Nuance-Architects

Braza
Newcomer
@Duncan @Moult

Interest discussion here. I think it deserves a dedicated thread.
Forgive my ignorance in terms of OpenBIM and Open Source SW development, but I would like to know what is the role of governments regarding these matters? Are there any initiative/regulation on an open format from, lets say, EU, UK or US?
I really think Open Source SW development is one of the great accomplishments of man kind. But unfortunately I tend to see it in a more reliable form within small scale projects. Making an analogy, is like comparing the building of a barn and a skyscraper. You can build a barn on a weekend with some friends and a barbecue, but try to build a skyscraper like this (?) I have the impression, taken by some awful experiences with sw like LibreOffice, that Open Source is more suitable for small projects, like smartphone apps, GDL objects, and things like that. The bigger the project, the bigger the mess. Does this makes sense?
Paulo Henrique Santos, Architect
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Jp1138
Expert
Braza wrote:
@Duncan @Moult

The bigger the project, the bigger the mess. Does this makes sense?
It´s easier with smaller applications, of course, but there are examples of complex applications working fine, like Blender. Somewhat less successful are others like Gimp or Inkscape.

I don´t think Libreoffice is that bad, either, just another case of the big players, in this case Microsoft, not following standards.
ARCHICAD 24 SPA
Windows 10

Braza wrote:
I really think Open Source SW development is one of the great accomplishments of man kind. But unfortunately I tend to see it in a more reliable form within small scale projects. Making an analogy, is like comparing the building of a barn and a skyscraper. You can build a barn on a weekend with some friends and a barbecue, but try to build a skyscraper like this (?)
With my limited understanding I think there lies the weak link in Open Source & small apps. Once finance plays any part in the design process there is an immediate shift to duty of care and accountability. Openly declared performance standards and blocks of code that will under stress testing deliver consistent results are to be applauded, but when things go wrong as designers you can be assured our lawyers and insurers will be looking to point fingers at the origin of the problem. If it came from a big brand there is a chance of recovery, if the problem is nested in a group of small apps where do you start. Sorry, this is an adversarial position, but it is the nature of trading and human nature to limit risk. This is fundamentally why we gravitate to the likes of Archicad, because it delivers some basic surety of performance and when it fails we know where to turn. Now if Graphisoft choose to build their product off the back of open source code that is their option and their risk, but I believe they are better resourced to carry out the required stress testing before delivery while we concentrate on our designs.
Apple iMac macOS Big Sur / AC24UKI (most recent builds)

Podolsky
Newcomer
Actually that would be good idea: a BIM application must have ability to translate in real time changes in the model online. Like some sort of HTTP chat protocol using IFC entries.
Something that literally can look like that:
IP address, date, time, user name, IFC class parameters ...

This way it's possible to collect such online BIM streams into one project. Let say our engineer is working on Tekla, services engineer on Revit, architect on ArchiCAD and consultants are using BIMx and Solibry.
The collection of the streams and visualisation of the project can happen even online on cloud server, as global CDE. To make common data environment really common, it must works like Google today - everybody knows what is Google and there is no conversations about Google instability, unsatisfaction of translation or search results.

Support of additional Add-ons for different languages such GDL, AUTOLISP also would make the system universal. Then every package we are using today can become just another BIM-web-browser. Also such a system would have an ability of creation of BIMbots, robots that can generate events and translate online their IFC model.
To easy visualise all that, imagine team of computers playing chess online. They just telling to each other new position of figure and making comments about it.
It's also necessary to notice - chat form of the streams very good for commenting, when each comment is attached to an IFC object, located in project tree.
Just imagine the start of the project, that happens on the web-site and the web-site translates site position and geometry. Without any interpretations and discussions how to connect, what drawings to provide etc. to the stream is connecting site surveyor, who providing geometry of the existing building.
Having necessary entry as day and time in IFC element, we are getting alive 4D BIM - it can be time when inserted by user in the model, made any change, price, invoice, transaction proof, delivery and installation time on site. Then with application as calendar we can manage all items in time, setting installation time in construction project as we set today meetings in calendar.
Finally collecting all into news timeline similar to Facebook, with previews of new photos, point clouds, models and drawings, recordings of meetings, official reports from site, forums, etc. All communication like emails is happening on the same platform too. Just imagine you just scroll Facebook in the morning and really do serious work.
Such a protocol possible to translate into Google Map, or another Map services with different permission level, then real virtual site visits can happen.
That would be really cool.

Duncan Lithgow
Newcomer
I'd like to comment on the topics of quality and scale.

Opensource Software and Free/Libre Software need to be understood for what they are. They are a collective effort by a community of developers with a common interest. Sometimes they got a good start in life. LibreOffice started when StarOffice (proprietary) became OpenOffice (copy-left Free Software). Blender had a great start when it after nine yrs of development became opensource (interesting story worth reading) on the initiative of the / a key developer who still plays a key role.

But still in both cases, just take a moment to guess how many hours of professional programming has gone into these projects compared to similar software from Microsoft and Adobe or Autodesk.

Development follows the needs of the users. As larger organizations have been more involved in development the scalability and robustness of the projects increases. For LibreOffice this has been party thanks to German State governments who have seen the need to invest in software that protects data privacy for them and their citizens. For Blender large film productions have found it useful and got involved in improving it.

So what's missing in this story for BIM & AEC? We're almost building this from scratch and we have no (well maybe one, LendLease) large backer. But it's just a matter of time. Every time someone explains why opensource and free/libre software is a great way to develop software, that changes people idea of what is possible.

I have to mention here that software licenses & patents are a *huge* part of the problem here. In buildings in the real world (or cars, boats, chairs ...) anyone can look at how things are done and learn from them. In software you can't. Patent lawyers have made sure that if one company finds a great way of writing software to solve a problem - no-one else will ever see it. The power of copy-left free software is that it says "I'll share with you, now you share with us."

By the way, are there open source extensions to ArchiCAD?

Podolsky
Newcomer
No. There is no open source extensions. Standard GDL library is open. Some users can open their GDL scripts. I didn't see anything in connection with open source software: like support of one of OS renderers (that actually could be a good idea) or support of Blender file format (but this is not really needed).
It's also worth notice, that third part development on ArchiCAD is not active. Add-ons technology can seriously change interface and possibilities in ArchiCAD, but current amount of Add-ons is not impressive. Maybe more experienced programmers don't want to take part because of complicity of Add-ons or just because in another platforms it looks more promising.

For me it's really strange - if hungry person is sitting in front of piece of cake where is written - take it, it's for you - he is not doing that. I can compare this situation to how Graphisoft never tried in make any export plug-ins to OS renderers like LuxRender, when in ArchiCAD there nothing similar yet to MLT.

Duncan Lithgow
Newcomer
Podolsky wrote:
No. There is no open source extensions. Standard GDL library is open. Some users can open their GDL scripts. ...
"open" in what way? Could someone make a FreeCAD Workbench that exported GDL scripts to define ArchiCAD objects?

Podolsky
Newcomer
Duncan wrote:
Podolsky wrote:
No. There is no open source extensions. Standard GDL library is open. Some users can open their GDL scripts. ...
"open" in what way? Could someone make a FreeCAD Workbench that exported GDL scripts to define ArchiCAD objects?
GDL scripts have built-in licences: Public Domain Dedication 1.0, Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0, Attribution 3.0, Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0, Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 or commercial. Every user can choose type of license when he starts his script. Script also can be password protected - this way hidden to another users.

As I know - there is no GDL use in another programs. This is an original language in ArchiCAD, created by Graphisoft. Was attempts to make GDL international standard for CAD libraries - was created plug-ins for web and AutoCAD about 20 years ago, but somehow this project was unsuccessful. Sketchup warehouse and Revit families took this place these days.

I personally think that GDL is great. Very comfortable and simply language, but let to build a lot of useful stuff. Actually almost half of ArchiCAD functionality is built on GDL. Unfortunately GDL does not live outside of ArchiCAD - does not exist any packages working with GDL. The last try to make GDL more affordable for users was by introducing PARAM-O, but this program is working inside of ArchiCAD too.

I guess the main reason why GDL is not universal - because it has got a lot global variables and program requests reflecting special ArchiCAD architecture. Of course all that manageable - as soon as there is a will to make GDL open for use in another CADs, but today nobody interesting. For example nobody is working today on new GDL plug-ins for Revit, Sketchup or for Web browsers.

I think to use GDL-like language in BlenderBIM would be really beneficial for creating highly parametric models.

bouhmidage
Enthusiast
Open BIM would be easier with grashopper, whatch this video of data and geometry exchange between archicad and revit, using grashopper,
this plugin is still in beta stage, but looks promessing

https://speckle.systems/features/

AMD Ryzen 9 3900X, 32 GB RAM, RTX 3080 10 GB

Archicad 23

Windows 10 professional

https://www.behance.net/Nuance-Architects

Podolsky
Newcomer
bouhmidage wrote:
Open BIM would be easier with grashopper, whatch this video of data and geometry exchange between archicad and revit, using grashopper,
this plugin is still in beta stage, but looks promessing
The only problem that Rhino and Grasshopper are commercial product. There is Grasshopper copy called Sverchok on Blender currently under development.

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