Grasshopper naming


This might be a very simple question, but I’m a bit confused about the names of things in Grasshopper.

Specifically, the nodes in the Grasshopper editor - are those called components? If so, what do I call my set of Grasshopper components contained in a single gha file? A Grasshopper plugin? An Add-on?

(Brian James) #2


Right, the nodes are ‘Components’. I call custom tools added to GH an ‘add on’ personally, mainly because saying a plugin for a plugin sounds complicated.

They’re called add ons here too…

(David Rutten) #3

Unfortunately GH vocabulary grew slowly and in an uncontrolled fashion. A lot of the words used are not very good descriptors of the things they represent. Here are the most important ones that will probably not change as they are too deeply rooted by now:

  • Parameters (these should have been called ‘containers’ instead). These are objects which contain data. They can appear on their own as floating parameters, but they are also found on the left and right edges of components, where they function as input and output parameters respectively. Parameters are the only objects in GH that can be connected by wires.
  • Components these are objects that create new data. They almost always have parameters associated with them on the left and right side so technically a component is in fact an aggregate of inputs, outputs and something-in-between-which-has-no-name.
  • Wires are the bezier curves that connect two parameters. This at least is a good enough name.
  • Grips are particularly poorly named as they don’t allow you to ‘grip’ anything. They are the semi-circles on the sides of parameters where wires connect. Luckily the word ‘grip’ is not used in the GUI.

(Brian Gillespie) #4

As we work toward releasing Grasshopper, do you think there’s any value in fixing the nomenclature now - while the user base is comparatively small? I realize there are a lot of users, but they’re all participating in WIP and Beta development - surely they could handle a change from Parameters to Containers?

(Rajaa Issa) #5

GH terms/names are now established in training material, tutorials, etc., and I can see David’s point about how it might be difficult to change some key words, like component or parameter.


I’m a new Rhino user and about to start teaching myself Grasshopper. I didn’t realize it was a beta program, not just a free plug in to Rhino. Do you have a sense of what the price point is going to be once you’re out of beta?

(David Rutten) #7

It an option and since K’s on staff we have been making changes in nomenclature. However things like “Parameter” are very ubiquitous and well-established. As Rajaa pointed out it would invalidate a lot of training material out there.

Another option would be to make the changes for GH 2. There will probably be so many changes that any training material will probably become obsolete anyway.

(David Rutten) #8

Hi arail,

most likely Grasshopper 1.0 will be included with Rhino6 for free.


Thanks for the great reply (and apologies for being off topic).