Talk on Topologic?

Hi Everyone,
I am wondering if this group would be interested in a talk on Topologic (https://topologic.app). Would be happy to present it.
Best Regards,
Wassim

carlopavMoultbitacovirstephen_ltlangCyrilReD_CoDE

Comments

  • I'd love to hear about that!

  • I'd also really like to hear about it!

  • Any chance to get is running on Linux / MacOs ?
    Will never go back from full open source stack.

    MoultJesusbillCyril
  • edited July 8

    Agree with @stephen_l - is it possible to run on Linux / MacOS? Also, I'd be interested in a demo that does not rely on proprietary software, e.g. running it without needing Rhino and without needing Dynamo.

    Edit: if this is not possible, we will need to fix it in the Wiki too, to recategorise it as a extension to proprietary software.

  • edited July 8

    Second time I hear about Topologic :-). Yes I am interested and also my colleague who told me about for the first time. Thank you Wassim to propose it.

    @stephen_l said:
    Any chance to get is running on Linux / MacOs ?
    Will never go back from full open source stack.

    @Moult said:
    Agree with @stephen_l - is it possible to run on Linux / MacOS? Also, I'd be interested in a demo that does not rely on proprietary software, e.g. running it without needing Rhino and without needing Dynamo.

    Core is in C++ : https://github.com/NonManifoldTopology. Third party softwares are OCCT, Boost, OpenStudio and EnergyPlus.
    There is a .net and BHoM versions available in download section. So it definitely not rely on a proprietary software.

    Edit : Additionnal info. Dynamo and Grasshopper are only for visual data flow according to official website :

    Third Party Dependencies
    Autodesk Dynamo v 2.x or newer for visual data flow programming operations.
    McNeel Rhino 5 and Grasshopper3D or newer for visual data flow programming operations
    BHoM software for hosting TopologicBHoM (more info at: http://bhom.xyz)
    Open Cascade for non-manifold modelling operations.
    NREL OpenStudio 2.8 or newer for functionality related to energy simulation.
    DOE EnergyPlus v 8 or newer for functionality related to energy simulation.

  • https://topologic.app/software/

    System Requirements
    Operating System : Microsoft® Windows® 7, 8, or 10 64-bit

  • If you can move to Linux as operative system, you could get up to double of speed improvement:

    paullee
  • @topologic it seems ambiguous as to whether it is practical to run your software on a full FOSS stack. Could you clarify?

  • @topologic ping - would you be interested in presenting? The meetup is in two weeks.

    topologic
  • Everyone. Apologies. I had not turned on email notifications and missed your comments. Plus it was a hectic time finishing up the academic year. I will try to answer your questions here:

    1. If it is not too late, I would love to give a talk on Topologic.
    2. Topologic itself is free and open source. It is built in layers. The bottom most layer only needs opencascade. But you would need to write methods to feed it geometry and display its output.
    3. Higher layers are written in C# that allows it to connect to Dynamo and Grasshopper.
    4. I might have some news on porting to Linux in a month or so.
    brunopostleCyrilcarlopavJesusbillpaullee
  • Cheers @topologic Would love to hear more about it! See this thread for the monthly meetup. Add yourself to the spreadsheet :)

    topologic
  • @Moult said:
    Cheers @topologic Would love to hear more about it! See this thread for the monthly meetup. Add yourself to the spreadsheet :)

    Done. Looking forward to it.

    stephen_lbitacovir
  • @topologic Thanks for the talk, and I feel a little embarrassed that I didn't have any questions to ask. I've been pursuing a lot of related ideas and I can see that this system is very well placed exactly at the level where buildings should be designed. A BIM model that is just a collection of building components may have full semantic information about all the things in the model, but it doesn't say anything about the usefulness of the building as a whole - and as we've discovered, trying to assign information about relationships between parts to an existing 3d model after the fact is hard and not easily automatable.

    This could be the missing link that allows blender and freecad to leapfrog other software and become invaluable for architectural design. i.e. rather than concentrating on tools that work at the level of drawing walls and connecting them together, they could work at the level of rooms, spaces and the relationships between them, with the walls and other building components derived from this higher level information, their 3d geometry dynamically generated.

    Imagine a design tool where the spacial topology is used to generate a list of all the boundary and edge details in the building - inside corners, partitions, outside corners, eaves etc... then as each detail in the list is refined by the designer, the 3D geometry is updated. Similarly, the 3D geometry gets updated if the high level spacial topology is modified. Clash detection could then be used to highlight problems with details that don't fit, windows that clash with flashing etc...

    topologicMoultcarlopavJesusbill
  • This is exactly our vision for topologic. I hope we can get it to be fully platform agnostic.

    MoultbrunopostleReD_CoDEJesusbill
  • edited August 2

    @topologic Thank you for the invaluable presentation and a lot of interesting work on geometry, topology, graphs, matrices (especially adjustment matrix), and AI
    I think gbXML had (and still has) some limitations and inaccuracy, and yes, until 2-3 years ago IFC (IFC2x3) was a small schema/spec, and file format that didn't support many things, especially related to LOD and HVAC and energy, however, today IFC to FMI (Modelica) is one of the recent and important movements and I think gbXML in the near future will be replaced by this approach

    I think Topology has a good infrastructure to be in Blender too (normally almost all software (somewhat) support non-manifolds too), please check Animation Nodes (developed for Animation, Motion, and Particles): https://animation-nodes.com

    Maybe friends suggest other addons, however, I think AN is more advanced for Topologic than other ones

    Perhaps after that, we can work on SketchGraphs (https://github.com/PrincetonLIPS/SketchGraphs) and other approaches too

  • edited August 2

    Hi all and @topologic,

    I had a post earlier at 1st August 20:00 UTC Monthly Meetup before realising this thread.

    There are FreeCAD and IFC file there, bother to have a look there to avoid duplicating? Maybe continue here if there is any feedback.

    p.s.
    I do not realise any possible way to link to particular post in a thread, any idea ? Thanks.

  • [unfortunately this thread is in two places, I'll continue here] This discussion is really clarifying what I have been doing all this time with automated design and showing how the same principles can be applied to interactive design.

    This is the topology of the building I designed in Homemaker during the talk last month. The Homemaker geometry is much more constrained than topologic, i.e. it is strictly four-sided spaces in a 2½D world rather than arbitrary geometry in a 3D world, but the result is equivalent, all the spaces are joined into this non-manifold surface (i.e. a non-self-intersecting surface that defines multiple closed cells):

    This sort of thing is really easy to draw in blender, no need for additional helper tools. Homemaker doesn't currently spit this out as a 3D model like this, but it would be very easy to do.

    So, I'm using this topology to generate the dual graph which describes the connectivity between spaces, then I prune the dual graph to create the circulation graph that @paullee quoted:

    I'm also using this model to extract external walls, internal partitions, floor slabs etc.. :

    Plus it is really easy to extract all the edge conditions that need to be detailed, here I'm showing the eaves 'path' and two parapet 'paths':

    Elsewhere, I have a DXF file for each of these edge conditions, anything I draw in this DXF file gets extruded along the 'parapet' path shown above. What never occured to me before is that I could put a drawing box around this, add additional elements, annotate it with semantic information, and it could be the detailed design construction drawing - in addition to just being an extrusion definition that is used in the 3D model:

    Here is this 2D drawing mapped to the parapet 'path' in the IFC model, using a series of IFCSURFACECURVESWEPTAREASOLID entities:

    ..and all the walls and edge details converted into various IFC elements:

    [..continued below]

    topologicJesusbillpaullee
  • Fantastic work, @brunopostle. Yes, I saw your talk and your approach is very close to ours. Our mission was to create a foundational layer that can work in different contexts and on which other people can build. I would be very interested in the connection to IFC. Might be cool to collaborate and convert Topologic models into full IFC BIM models.
    I have a couple of questions:
    1. Can you explain a bit more how you prune the dual graph to create circulation?
    2. How much of the above is your crafting of the model vs. automated generation by scripts etc? My goal is to be able to create what you have done algorithmically.

  • edited August 2

    [continued] So forgetting for now about Homemaker, as literally none of this code is any use for an interactive tool:

    1. Drawing 3D non-manifold surfaces (non-self-intersecting surface that defines multiple closed cells) as required by topologic is really easy in blender and freecad (though I'm less familiar with freecad).
    2. All we need to be able to do is tag each of these closed cells with the 'type' of space they are intended to be, and topologic can extract all the wall paths, slabs, and edge conditions that need to be specified. It can tell us if the building circulation is connected.
    3. Topologic can even suggest where to put windows and doors, all we need to do is tag individual faces in the non-manifold surface describing a window/door strategy for each face.
    4. The result is an IFC file with correct semantic layering, but which can be edited at both the high-level space planning level, and at the low level edge detail level.
    topologic
  • @topologic said:

    1. Can you explain a bit more how you prune the dual graph to create circulation?

    The initial dual graph is all the 'potential' connections between spaces, i.e. any bit of wall that is big enough for a door. This is the most important graph as it defines all the possible futures of the building - the higher the degree of connectivity in this graph, the more likely the building can be adapted to unknown future uses. See Stewart Brand's book 'How Buildings Learn', though he doesn't talk about this in these words.

    I have each cell/space/room assigned a type: 'kitchen', 'bedroom', 'outside', etc... so I just traverse the graph and delete all the links between 'kitchen' and 'bedroom', or between 'toilet' and 'living room'. I discard multiple paths, i.e. if a toilet has two doors, then I keep the one that is the furthest distance from the 'living' spaces (I'm using Dijkstra's algorithm to calculate all the travel distances). I also assign vertical links between 'circulation' spaces that have enough space for a stair and still fit in the necessary doors. I add a link between the street and the building, preferably via an outside space, if not then directly through a circulation space, and in desperation I will add a link directly from the street to a living space or kitchen.

    At this point I can check that the graph is connected, any design with an unconnected circulation graph is scored down.

    1. How much of the above is your crafting of the model vs. automated generation by scripts etc? My goal is to be able to create what you have done algorithmically.

    It's all 100% generated by Homemaker, I only specify the boundary conditions (the literal site boundary, and the patterns that the building needs to fit) and at the end it spits out an IFC file with a (hopefully) complete design for the building. Homemaker works with more constrained topology than topologic is capable-of, so I can guarantee that walls are vertical, eaves are horizontal, and other things that dramatically reduce the number of edge conditions that I have to deal with. I'm only concerned with 'traditional' domestic architecture, so I only have to worry about getting that right and can ignore all the problems that 'artistic' architecture produces.

  • @brunopostle said:
    The initial dual graph is all the 'potential' connections between spaces, i.e. any bit of wall that is big enough for a door. This is the most important graph as it defines all the possible futures of the building - the higher the degree of connectivity in this graph, the more likely the building can be adapted to unknown future uses. See Stewart Brand's book 'How Buildings Learn', though he doesn't talk about this in these words.

    Yes. This is same in the Space Syntax world (see Hillier and Hanson's book 'The Social Logic of Space'). I have implemented quite a bit of graph theory algorithms in Topologic. So all this is possible.

    I have each cell/space/room assigned a type: 'kitchen', 'bedroom', 'outside', etc... so I just traverse the graph and delete all the links between

    How is the assignment made? By a user or also automatically? If automatically, is it based on area? What floor level the space is on?

    ... it spits out an IFC file with a (hopefully) complete design for the building...

    This is the bit I am missing. I know there are IFC exporters for Dynamo/Revit etc.. but if Topologic can return to Homemaker the 'skeletons' and centerlines then it will be very easy for Homemaker to turn these into IFC components. Topologic, as you said, can use logic and computation to correctly detail the non-manifold model with the needed place holders for things like windows and doors etc.
    Happy to work on a proof of concept even if it is a bit clunky in terms of data exchange; if you are up to it :)

  • edited August 2

    @topologic said:

    @brunopostle said:
    I have each cell/space/room assigned a type: 'kitchen', 'bedroom', 'outside', etc...

    How is the assignment made? By a user or also automatically? If automatically, is it based on area? What floor level the space is on?

    It's 100% evolution, I don't pre-empt the design by trying to assign attributes like this manually or procedurally, so the types are allocated by mutation and crossover, and the fitness algorithm takes care of removing individuals from the population that have stupid assignments.

    ... it spits out an IFC file with a (hopefully) complete design for the building...

    This is the bit I am missing. I know there are IFC exporters for Dynamo/Revit etc.. but if Topologic can return to Homemaker the 'skeletons' and centerlines then it will be very easy for Homemaker to turn these into IFC components. Topologic, as you said, can use logic and computation to correctly detail the non-manifold model with the needed place holders for things like windows and doors etc.
    Happy to work on a proof of concept even if it is a bit clunky in terms of data exchange; if you are up to it :)

    As it happens I needed to modularise this because it made my brain hurt, so the IFC generation is done by a tool called 'Molior' that accepts as input a (currrently undocumented, but quite simple) file format that is just a YAML formatted list of all the building components: wall (an open or closed 2d path with thickness and height information), extrusion (the 2d directrix used by the parapet profiles above), insert (which is implemented at too low a level to be fully useful, needs fixing), then ceiling, slab, roof, space, and stair all currently presume a four-sided perimeter (but ceilings slabs and space can be fixed easily, probably).

    If you like I can document this Molior file format a bit, starting with 'wall'? I can start a new thread.

    topologicReD_CoDEpaullee
  • @brunopostle said:
    If you like I can document this Molior file format a bit, starting with 'wall'? I can start a new thread.

    Yes please! Thanks

  • Perhaps I can combine this with the work I did on Cell subdivision which is based on a building program (expressed as percentages of a total volume). We can feed that into a GA and use the dual graph and the resulting geometry to compute a fitness function.

  • @topologic yes I'm doing cell subdivision like this, except:

    • All my work is with 2½D floor layouts, so the subdivision is walls and not floors. Building storeys are implemented as additional levels that (mostly) inherit the subdivision structure from the level below.
    • I'm subdividing arbitrary quads, which don't have to be perfectly rectangular/orthogonal.

    I'll see if I can document a simple Molior file today.

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