Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Catching Up with Dynamo: New Release, New Pre-Releases, New Website!

It's been awhile since I posted about Dynamo, the open source graphical programming platform for design, and there's been a whole lotta shakin going on...

There have been a couple of new releases in 2014, and Dynamo has moved from the Vasari website to it's own site, It's a good looking site, clean and modern, with easy access to release and pre-release downloads, blog posts, community forums and more. This is certainly the most professional, most well-organized and well-documented open source development effort for the A/E/C industry that I've seen.

The new Dynamo homepage

The new Dynamo Blog page

The new Community forums

The new Download page

On the release front, there have been 2 releases since I last posted about Dynamo late last year, 0.6.3 on 4/3/14 and 0.7.1 on 7/18/14.

Additionally, there are a series of 0.7.2 pre-release builds available for download. As of this writing, there were four builds available with todays date. That's extreme!

Pre-release builds available for download

Following are details from the last two stable releases, excerpted from the Dynamo website.

Dynamo 0.7.1 

The shift from Dynamo 0.6 to 0.7 represents a significant refactoring of the original code base. The new software architecture allows for better performance, more robust geometry, sophisticated interactions between traditional scripting and visual programming, and loading of external software libraries. There is a lot that’s new. We hope you’ll love it.

New in Dynamo 0.7.1:
  • Revit 2014 and Revit 2015 compatible
  • Dynamo runs standalone, without Revit
  • Integrated DesignScript syntax in code blocks
  • Vastly expanded geometry library
  • Automated upgrading from 0.6.3 files to 0.7
  • Visualization performance improvements
  • Library reorganization
  • Library loading (experimental)
  • New opening page
  • Node UI enhancements
  • Node/Geometry navigation improvements
  • Automated graph organization
  • Preview Bubble overhaul
  • New sample content
  • New file structure

Dynamo 0.6.3

An incremental improvement to 0.6.2 featuring a number of stability improvements, new nodes, access to more Revit functionalities and a richer computation environment.

Release notes:
  • Dynamo Sandbox: Explore Dynamo without running Revit or Vasari (see your Start Menu)
  • Application level settings for Imperial and Metric Units:  We hear that most of the world does not use Imperial Units, and we’d like to accommodate this.  
  • Daylighting with cloud Rendering service sample files:  New analysis workflows available.  You will need an Autodesk ID to use these services, but you can get access to this when you sign up for membership on this website.
  • Set Parameters Node – set writable parameters for any Revit Element, (not restricted to loaded Families anymore)
  • Add name to reference plane node.
  • Convert to Unitized measures (Length, Area, Volume)
  • Explode Node (Solids to Faces, Faces to Edges)
  • Solids from Elements handles lists
  • Select All Elements of Type and Category Nodes
  • Wall Nodes element IDs persist after changes
  • Area Node
  • Volume Measure node
  • Length from Curve Node
  • Topography from Points and Points from Topography Nodes
  • Last of List Node
  • Filter by Boolean Mask
  • Group by Key Node
  • Is Null node (for filtering out null values)
  • Explode Node (replaces Explode Solid)
  • Python nodes now can take node inputs as functions
  • Shuffle List Node
  • Select All Elements of Category Nodes
  • Divided Path Node updates
  • XYZs from Divided path
  • Treat curves and edges the same for intersection operations
  • Preserve Wall Elements on change
  • Improvements to node Help descriptions
  • Toolbar shortcuts
  • Improvements to Preview bubble display (fades, compact error messages, etc)

For not only kicking it up a notch but for taking it to a whole new level, the Dynamo development team, currently standing at 101 contributors according to the website, earns an Editor's Choice award.

There's a lot more information available on the Dynamo website.

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