BlenderBIM updates and new features: Version v0.0.210731

Blender 3.0: The beginner's guide

A significant amount of people think about Blender as a 3D modeler and platform to render realistic images to visualize your designs. It can help a lot in this regard, but that is only part of its role in architecture. With Add-pons like BlenderBIM, you can expand Blender and include authoring and document BIM data. That opens a world of possibilities for Blender to have an entire open-source workflow.

When using the BlenderBIM Add-on, you can create IFC files in compliance with ISO standards. A new version released recently has about 134 new features and multiple bug fixes!

Here is a list of the new features and bug fixes from version v0.0.210731:

  • Importing types from a project library now also bring in materials
  • You can now search for properties without first specifying a pset name.
  • Extruded slabs now support voided profiles
  • Dumb slabs now auto generate footprint representations
  • Footprint and side areas are now auto generated for wall quantities
  • Dumb slabs now auto generate quantity information when edited
  • The authoring UI now filters by available types only so authoring is more streamlined
  • New dumb column tool which creates parametric solid columns from profile sets
  • Free float is not calculated in work schedules.
  • Profile set usage attributes can now be edited, including cardinal point and reference extent.
  • Support added for importing elements with no representations
  • You can now animate demolition, logistic, and renovation tasks in work schedules
  • You can now bulk copy task attributes to other tasks in the task tree
  • Add support for product inputs for tasks, which can describe logistic movements around a site
  • Generated construction animations now support product consumptions, movement to/from, and multiple processes per product
  • New feature to bulk copy elements to multiple spatial containers
  • New IfcPatch recipe to extract only spaces.
  • Uncached schedule recalculation is now twice as fast. Nice.
  • Modifications to scheduled dates now cascade through the task tree.
  • Scheduled dates now cascade when dependencies, lag times, and calendars are modified.
  • New feature to see derived global and local elevations of objects
  • Appending from project libraries now supports material properties and styles
  • Improve usability in browsing project library when there is only a single type
  • You can now filter structural loads based on name and inverse references.
  • You can now add / remove / edit boundary conditions of structural models.
  • Column profiles now auto update when you change material profiles
  • Column profiles now auto update when you switch type
  • MS Project XML conversion now supports blank IFCs or non-existant work plans
  • Work task tree columns are now fully customisable by the user
  • The wall tool is now a more generic, accessible BIM Tool to create any object.
  • Task now auto generate identification numbers
  • Task trees can now be sorted by any column, independent of WBS.
  • Changing cardinal points for material profiles now auto updates shapes like columns and beams
  • Incorrect body contexts coming from Revit are now accommodated even though it’s wrong
  • New developer guide documentation, describing IfcOpenShell and module architecture
  • New documentation for the undo system, since it’s a bit tricky
  • New add application usecase.
  • IfcOpenShell now supports transaction based operations with undo and redo.
  • New BlenderBIM Add-on UI undo support for … well, almost everything. Yeah, ctrl-z is a feature.
  • New print IFC debug feature
  • IfcSverchok by_type node is now schema independent
  • Blender materials now explicitly link to surface styles upon import, so managing materials and styles are less confusing
  • New installation documentation for IfcSverchok
  • Mixed geolocation workarounds from proprietary software are now supported
  • New documentation on georeferencing, since it is poorly understood and the variety of proprietary workarounds creates problems for the industry
  • New Windows installation instructions for BlenderBIM Add-on developers
  • Editing object placements can now either cascade or not
  • Changing Blender material names now auto updates both IFC material and surface style names
  • You can now remove styles
  • You can now edit style attributes
  • Styles can now be linked to materials, not representation items
  • New loading bar when importing an IFC.
  • Workspace BIM Tool now adapts based on the active element type
  • Walls can now be extended to any arbitrary cursor location
  • 3D wireframes and curves are now imported
  • Importing 2D elements of anything is now supported
  • New IfcPatch recipe to downgrade indexed poly curves, such as to allow these IFC4 objects to show up in viewers like Revizto / XBim Xplorer / etc
  • New readme on how to use the new BCF 3.0 API.
  • Copying a spatial element now auto creates a new collection for you
  • The align tool now works on any generic product, not just walls
  • The create file usecase is now fully documented
  • New prototype IfcSverchok API node.
  • New system to auto extract docs and type hints from the API
  • Parametric beams are now also supported via the BIM Tool
  • Parametric members are now also supported via the BIM Tool
  • You can now select all elements of the same IFC class via the IFC Class panel
  • New IFC Debug feature to print resolved object placements
  • New script to generate a demo project library
  • Profiles of more specialised subtypes (like hollow sections) are now supported
  • New feature where you can select related objects from an active type object
  • Property and quantity sets are now shown in alphabetical order
  • New system module to graphically view your IFC MEP systems
  • New FM utility module to easily select maintainable assets using different presets
  • New incomplete IfcFM library to extract and format FM handover related data to replace IfcCOBie
  • New feature to add wall openings at your cursor location
  • New feature to add slab openings at your cursor location
  • Openings are now placed in their own collection to prevent assignment to the spatial hierarchy
  • New workspace hotkey to toggle opening visibility
  • Openings are now auto dissolved when authoring for easier mesh editing
  • Hotkey UI now looks much nicer.
  • New IfcPatch recipe to fix duplicate and invalid GlobalIds, typically coming from other BIM apps.
  • New IfcPatch recipe to fix duplicate Revit type objects.
  • Editing voids or dumb walls now auto enable dynamic voids.
  • New experimental serialiser based drawing generation code exists, but disabled by default.
  • Parametric profiles now auto sync depth prior to changes.
  • Parametric profiles now auto recalculate cardinal points when editing in mesh mode
  • Material based surface styles are now supported as a default during import
  • New debug utility to purge all Blender IFC links
  • Creating a new project twice no longer mixes collections
  • Materials (and a potential surface style) are now assigned in Blender if you assign an IFC Object Material
  • Object style colours are now auto synchronised upon export
  • The active object is now still active after assigning a container.
  • Material names are now auto synced with style names.
  • Linking a non-existant or non-IFC file is now prohibited.
  • Panels which only support IFC4 are now auto hidden in IFC2X3.
  • Fix bug where adding types without a material was broken
  • Fix error message when getting psets
  • Fix bug where all meshes were cast to solid by accident.
  • Fix bug where 2D or 1D objects generated an invalid box representation
  • Fix bug where the P6 import module was not shipped
  • Fix bug where you couldn’t delete a quantity from a quantity set
  • Fix bug where unlinking copied Blender objects didn’t work
  • Fix bug where derived grid north was unreadable in the geolocation panel
  • Fix bug where custom pset template properties wouldn’t show up
  • Fix bug in P6 import to exclude Level of Effort activities
  • Fix bug where extrusion detection on voided profiles glitched out
  • Fix confusing transparency attribute in add style API usecase
  • Fix bug where validation errors could be created in IFC2X3 due to missing owners and mandatory attributes
  • Fix bug where absolute coordinates weren’t correctly detected from coordinate lists
  • Fix bug in IfcSverchok where refresh buttons didn’t work
  • Fix bug where bsDD API token refreshing didn’t work.
  • Fix bug where reloading an IFC file didn’t properly refresh the ID Map without a restart
  • Fix bug where colouring by attributes didn’t work reliably when you pressed undo
  • Fix bug where styles weren’t always present when updating representations
  • Fix bug where all instances change meshes when changing type
  • Fix bug where editing a single material didn’t work
  • Fix bug where reused placements from copied objects led to incorrect locations
  • Fix bug where psets didn’t show up for non element types (e.g. IfcDoorStyle) in IFC2X3
  • Fix bug where editing multiple objects didn’t synchronise changes when exporting
  • Fix bug where covetool didn’t detect skylights properly
  • Fix bug where searching for GlobalId didn’t work if you also used the debug panel
  • Fix bug where date conversions fail if IFC2X3 dates have fractions
  • Fix bug where deprecated functions were used in drawing generation, causing drawings to fail
  • Fix bug where BIMTester attribute and psets checks didn’t work. Thanks Nitschi and dedicos!
  • Fix bug where material profile data was not purged correctly.
  • Fix bug where module data was not fully purged when a new scene started.
  • Fix bug where import filters didn’t properly exclude types and empty objects
  • Fix bug where removing the last object in a container would create an error
  • Fix bug where userdefined object types weren’t set correctly.
  • Fix bug where the pie menu shortcut had a missing module.
  • Fix bug where you had to restart Blender to see changes to custom psets.
  • Fix bug where import process log couldn’t write to a non writable directory.
  • Fix potential bugs where context could be incorrect during operations.
  • Fix bug where doing IfcDiffs didn’t work.
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