YORIK’S COFFEE CORNER

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in categories  sketches  permalink:  567   posted on 09.12.2018 23:13
From Yorik
Some recent sketches






in categories  freecad  opensource  permalink:  566   posted on 03.12.2018 5:05
From Yorik

FreeCAD BIM development news - November 2018

Hi all,

This is the November edition of our monthly report about the development of BIM tools for FreeCAD. As you know already if you read last month's report, we are (increasingly) busy preparing FreeCAD for its next 0.18 release, which is scheduled to happen before the end of this month/year. So far so good, we are busy ironing out the last bugs and getting everything ready.

By the way, one of the areas that always needs a lot of help from the community of FreeCAD users, is translation. With each release, we achieve a bigger number of languages in which FreeCAD is fully translated. This year, we have many that are above 90% already, and a couple of others that lag behind, that would really deserve some care. Do you know any of the languages on our translations framework? Please help! Just create yourself an account there and you are ready to go. No need to compromise yourself to reach any goal, if you just have 5 minutes and can translate 5 sentences, you will already have helped the project a lot! (And if you reach 500 sentences, you will have your name in the credits in FreeCAD -> Help -> About FreeCAD )

Last month I announced I would spend more time on the BIM workbench itself this month, as it is not tied to the pre-release "feature freeze" in which FreeCAD is at the moment. I did that, but I also underestimated the amount of bug-fixing needed in FreeCAD, so I ended up still spending a lot of time on FreeCAD bug fixing. In any case, one thing is as important as the other, and I think with this release the whole BIM ecosystem inside FreeCAD is reaching a level of maturity and stability that we never had before, and that it is becoming ready to enter the big player's courtyard.

As always, many, many thanks to all of you who contributed to this effort by donating money on Patreon, Liberapay or Paypal so I can spend more time working on FreeCAD. Next month, since it will be the last report of 2018, I'll do a small recap of these nearly two years of "campaign", it has been steadily increasing over the time, and so far it is a really motivating and, I hope, productive experience.

So, enough boring bla-bla already, let's go to what interests us:

The video: Expressions

This month's video is about the expressions engine of FreeCAD:

BIM Interface changes

This is a small change, but curiously something I never really gave some thought before. As I am working more on the User Experience (UX) side of things with the BIM workbench, these questions take more importance. Until now, I tried to fit all the new interface panels inside the Task panel of FreeCAD. This is the good old idea that interface elements should not block your 3D view, and stop you from working. However, some tasks do require you to stop working and work on the task only. These should not be squeezed into the sidebar but get a larger dialog that occupies the central part of your screen. So the Project setup dialog now has a nicer and more comfortable dialog and it works much better.

The other BIM tools from the Manage menu should, I think, stay in the Task area, as they allow you to interact with the contents of the model. I think we have a good rule from now on to decide what should be in the Task area and what should get its own separate, blocking dialog. I will try to assess which areas of FreeCAD are not following this rule correctly.

BIM Tutorial

This was one of the first ideas I had for the BIM workbench, and the system is now implemented and running, although the tutorial itself is still incomplete. The concept is largely used in games: After you install it and start a new game, you are often offered to take a tutorial first, to familiarize with how the game works. That tutorial is often itself the first chapter of the game, so you play a first chapter that is specially designed to help you learn what needs to be learned, and you are guided through it by tips boxes, explanations, small "goals" you need to achieve, etc.

I find that brilliant, very different than a video or text tutorial. You are already playing, and the game explains you how to play it. After you finish the tutorial chapter, you are on your way.

The idea here is to do as much as possible the same: Have a tutorial that "unfolds" right inside your FreeCAD window, and that guides you through a series of steps designed to show you how things work. Each page of the tutorial explains you something, and has goals to be achieved.

The tutorial is entirely written on the FreeCAD wiki, so it is easy to get fixed and bettered by community members. Each goal has a simple, one-line python test, that returns True or False. I hope this will become a killer feature that no other BIM application has, and might also be of a big help to overcome the steep learning curve of FreeCAD.

Units chooser in status bar

You can now change the working units on-the-fly, directly in the status bar.

BIM Documentation

The BIM workbench documentation is finally complete. Although many of the tools can still evolve, we now have an up-to-date documentation, which is a very fundamental piece of the game too.

Parity table

I also started a parity table which I believe will be a very precious resource to learn FreeCAD and its BIM workbench when coming from another application. Please help me to complete it with other concepts and applications!

Task Watchers

The BIM workbench now has what we in FreeCAD call Task Watchers, which takes place inside the Task panel when no command is active. These watchers can change according to the context, so we can really use them to guide the user through logical sequences of actions. At the moment, they will simply display creation tools when no object is selected, and modification tools when something is selected. However, I plan to refine that when we see opportunities for it.

Revit compatibility

I also spent some time fixing a few issues in the IFC importer and exporter, and we begin to get a satisfying experience when exchanging models between Revit and FreeCAD. It is now possible to model in FreeCAD with a reliable 100% of your exported objects appearing correctly in Revit and being editable, by 1) using only extrusions (Part Extrude, Arch Structure or Arch Wall) and 2) Setting the IFC role of all exported objects to "Undefined", which will export them as IfcBuildingElementProxy, which imports into Revit as Generic Components. This is not mandatory, of course, all IFC types are supported, but the reason is that some other types have additional rules that sometimes override the way the object is stored inside the IFC file. To say it another way, if some object doesn't appear correctly in Revit, set its IFC role to "Undefined" in FreeCAD. Although not ideal (yet), at least it is reliable.

That's it for this month, I'm not listing here the small bugfixes and polishes I've been doing a bit everywhere, be sure to check the commit log of FreeCAD and the BIM workbench if you are interested in the details. Thanks for reading!

Cheers

Yorik

 


in categories  sketches  permalink:  565   posted on 03.12.2018 1:17
From Yorik
Todays sketch of the astrophysics school at Ibirapuera park, São Paulo


permalink:  564   posted on 01.12.2018 16:22
From Johan de Jager
I love this minimalistic approach to building design

in categories  sketches  permalink:  563   posted on 25.11.2018 24:22
From Yorik
Drawings I did these last weeks:










permalink:  562   posted on 25.11.2018 24:20
From Yorik
Commenting post 560: There is no way to know when, as with all things with open-source projects, but there is some code for this already, just need a little time to push that further.

permalink:  561   posted on 25.11.2018 24:19
From Yorik
Commenting post 558: Yes there are strange problems with Liberapay at the moment apparently... I'm trying to sort that out

permalink:  560   posted on 20.11.2018 10:24
From Jeff
Hey Yorik, you doing a wonderfull job in both developing and explaning freecad. Thank you for that so much.
Can you a share a little insight? When we could expect to see dimensions for archsections in the techdraw workbench will arrive?

permalink:  558   posted on 16.11.2018 24:58
From Knut Hohenberg
Hello Yorik, you mentioned liberapay in your last post - but is this service still functional? Soon after I registered there, I received an email from them saying that they had been thrown out by their payment processor, and that I should either reclaim my money or have the whole sum sent in one go (which I chose). I just logged in to their site again, but cannot find a way to donate anymore - but maybe I am just too blind...

permalink:  556   posted on 11.11.2018 24:15
From Bogdan Grigoroaea
Commenting post 26: Hello, mate, I am an architecture student from Romania and I need a site for my diploma project. Is there any chance that you still have the digital plans that they gave you when you entered the contest? I cannot seem to find them anywhere

in categories  sketches  permalink:  555   posted on 10.11.2018 23:20
From Yorik
Sketches I did today with Urban Sketchers São Paulo:




permalink:  554   posted on 10.11.2018 23:19
From Yorik
Commenting post 553: I could try, but that's not really my specialty... But have a look at these threads on the FreeCAD forum, there is a lot about flow sim: https://forum.freecadweb.org/viewforum.php?f=37

permalink:  553   posted on 08.11.2018 8:58
From Jakob Andersson
Can you please create a tutorial how to do a flow simulation using FreeCAD?

permalink:  552   posted on 06.11.2018 23:05
From Yorik
Commenting post 551: Olá Sérgio,
Funciona sim, o único problema é que quando você troca para cut faces, o objeto Shape2Dview fica no plano de corte, e não no "chão". Você tem que mudar a propriedade "In Place" para False (ou mover ele manualmente, claro).
Abraços

permalink:  551   posted on 06.11.2018 21:05
From sergio dias
Commenting post 549: Olá Yorik, como vai? belos sketches!
gostaria de saber se é possível utilizar a ferramenta cut faces em uma seção vertical (corte).
Só consigo utilizar em seção horizontal (planta) !
grande abraço!

permalink:  550   posted on 05.11.2018 7:55
From Dirk Witvrouwen
Commenting post 549: Thanks Yorik and to all of the FreeCAD community. Please do merge Assembly3 into main trunk, even if it may be a somewhat bumpy ride at first. A long term supported assembly workbench is long overdue.

in categories  freecad  opensource  permalink:  549   posted on 05.11.2018 4:34
From Yorik

FreeCAD BIM development news - October 2018

Hi all,

High time for a new article about what I've been doing this month with FreeCAD related to BIM development. Sorry for being late! This month again, there are not many new features, basically because 1) I've been to the Google Summer of Code mentors summit at Google, in San Francisco Bay Area, and 2) FreeCAD has entered "feature-freeze mode", that is, a special time scheduled before an official release, where everybody agrees to not introduce any new feature (which might always introduce new bugs), and instead, solve all possible bugs to make the release as bug-free as possible.

That is no less important, of course. Bug fixing is an important part of the development cycle, even if less enjoyable. Developers always prefer to code new stuff, which is far more exciting, and, as any other human being, tend to leave the boring stuff for later So it's good to have a time where we force ourselves to concentrate on bugs. Also, it makes it much more enjoyable and motivating when your friends are also busy fixing bugs, it turns the whole thing into a kind of game.

Once again, thanks a lot to all of you who contribute to this whole effort by sponsoring me on Patreon or Liberapay or who directly sent some bucks on my PayPal account. Sorry for leaving you probably hungry for new features this month, but I'm sure everybody understands the importance and necessity of this bug-fixing phase. Since the BIM workbench is not part of the FreeCAD code base, though, it is also not part of the feature freeze. So expect some new stuff there in the coming months anyway, as soon as I get the bulk of the bug-fixing effort done.

0.18 Release

The plan is to have a new release of FreeCAD ready for the end of this year or early 2019, in time for the next Debian freeze cycle (they also have one, during which they don't accept any new package). This is important because if we get the new version of FreeCAD into Debian in time, it will cascade back on Ubuntu and all other derivative distributions such as Mint or Elementary, and all the next versions of these distributions will automatically get that new version.

This release will not bring a very big amount of new features, but rather be dedicated to stability. We've been busy this year with porting FreeCAD to the latest versions of Python (Python3) and Qt (Qt5). This makes FreeCAD basically future-proof for a reasonable time. Not that FreeCAD still supports Python2 and Qt4, so it can still safely be built on older platforms. We will probably continue to support these until they get really obsolete.

Another reason to make this release is that we have big things coming in. The new Assembly3 workbench is close to completion, but it represents a big change to the FreeCAD code, and introduces a lot of new bugs. However, while it is not merged into the main FreeCAD code, very few people actually test it, and therefore bugs are slow to get spotted. And the Assembly3 code is so huge that it has become very difficult to assess and split into more easily manageable parts. So we are pondering if it would not be best to merge it and let the bugs happen, and fix them as they come. In any case, for that, we need to have an official release just before, so people can stay with a stable version until things calm down.

By the way, if you haven't seen it, we now also have a third way to makes assemblies in FreeCAD, with a new plugin workbench called A2Plus which is now an official FreeCAD add-on](https://github.com/kbwbe/A2plus) that can be installed via the Addons Manager. So now we are starting to have a whole family of solutions to deal with assemblies in FreeCAD. Choose what suits you best!

The video

This month's video is about producing 2D drawings from your model, and placing dimensions, hatches and annotations.

Google Summer of Code Mentors Meeting

As I mentioned above, I've this year again attended the GSOC Mentors Meeting, which happened at Google headquarters in California. Since we participated to the GSOC program this year again, together with our FOSS CAD friends, we earned a couple of slots to go to California. This year, I went to represent FreeCAD, together with Sean Morrison and Daniel Rossberg from BRL-CAD.

The mentors summit is an incredible experience, unlike any other open-source-oriented event I've been lucky to go. A part of the Google campus is open during one weekend, to receive around 300 developers from the whole world. There is plenty to eat, drink, do and watch at any time of day and night, plenty of goodies for you to grab, and they provide several spaces for people to gather and discuss what they like. That's basically it. And it works amazingly. You end up talking a lot to everybody else, contacts are made, brains work, ideas are discussed, projects get born.

This year I had pretty long discussions with both Sean and Daniel, about two interesting subjects: Integration of FreeCAD and BRL-CAD, and a general effort to do more integration with all other FOSS CAD projects.

The BRL-CAD and FreeCAD integration is something we've been discussing with Sean for some time: BRL-CAD is in need of a better modelling interface, which FreeCAD can provide, and on the other hand the BRL-CAD system is a very powerful modelling engine, and it would only serve FreeCAD to make use of it. Besides, FreeCAD being so modular and extensible, we made an habit to try to plug anything we can into it..

We are still thinking as to how this integration would/could happen, but it would likely be on the form of an additional FreeCAD workbench/addon, a bit like the OpenSCAD workbench. BRL-CAD has a nice C++ API, to which Daniel is one of the main contributors, which is very likely what we would use. The aim would be first to be able to use FreeCAD to model and save the result as a BRL-CAD file, then see all we can get from this that could benefit FreeCAD. One of the big advantages of BRL-CAD is its capacity to manage extremely large models. And it can do all the important parts that we need in FreeCAD: Geometry calculations and triangulation.

The other idea is actually a series of ideas we have been discussing, to encourage the interaction between all the different FOSS CAD projects out there, such as LibreCAD, STEPcode,OpenSCAD, LinuxCNC ro Slic3r. There are many others specially in the BIM area (IfcOpenShell, IfcPlusPlus or BIMServer for example), that could be interested in this as well. Unlike the commercial world, where each similar application to yours is seen as a concurrent, that you should try to beat (or buy, or kill, or, even better, both), in the open-source world we can help each other, and help users with a family of tools that work well with each other. Each individual application benefits from this, as it integrates and can count on a more solid ecosystem.

Our ideas ranged from a common forum, structures to be able to collect and redistribute donations, definition and sponsoring of common projects, etc. There is much to be defined and done there yet, but we now have several people committed to make this happen. As soon as we have something ready, you'll be the first to know

Ah, as usual, there was an impressive table of chocolates that everybody brought from all corners of the world. I had also brought a load of FreeCAD stickers (very poor ones that I made at the last minute, will do a new batch of better quality ASAP) that got entirely distributed. Quite a lot of people know FreeCAD nowadays!

Arch Reference improvements

Besides this, I've also added another feature to the Arch Reference, which is the support for colors. When reading an object that has individual face colors defined, the Reference object will adopt those colors (and, if its UpdateColors property is set, will keep those in sync if the base file changes). The Arch BuildingPart has also be updated to store the colors of its children, so from now on you can create a whole BuildingPart made of several objects, reference it in another file, and have its aspect look exactly like in the referenced file.

I am already experimenting with the next step, which is to introduce a "lightweight" mode, which will allow us to work with way larger models. This will probably only be merged after the 0.18 release, but we'll make sure to have everything ready by then.

That's it for this month, expect more focus on the BIM workbench itself next month, thanks for reading, and thanks again to everybody who supports this effort!

Cheers

Yorik


in categories  sketches  permalink:  548   posted on 04.11.2018 2:23
From Yorik
Done today in São Paulo, at Estadão:


in categories  sketches  permalink:  547   posted on 04.11.2018 2:22
From Yorik
A couple of drawings I did in Cuidad de México:







permalink:  546   posted on 31.10.2018 22:42
From Yorik
Commenting post 545: Bedankt! Ja, BIM is in volle ontwikkeling (report elk maand hier of op https://www.patreon.com/yorikvanhavre of https://twitter.com/yorikvanhavre ). Er zijn al werktuigen om BoQ to produceren ( https://www.freecadweb.org/wiki/Arch_Schedule ) die nog uitgebreid moet worden..