Intelligent selection wish

It is time to get rid of that annoying selection pop-up for us, semi-advanced users. You would not believe how many extra clicks and mouse movements it will save for users who work with more than 100K objects in their models when it comes to JUST SELECTION of objects. I don’t have to use 2 clicks to select a duplicated surface edge curve in 2017.

Why can’t I cycle through the overlapping objects “intelligently”? Just select the most recent created object/subobject of the most recent created object closest to you and cycle through with each consecutive click. Add priority table somewhere in options too. Ex.: Select groups first, curves second, surfaces third, polysurfaces fourth and meshes last.



That sounds like a good priority for your selection hierarchy, but what about the other users that might want a different priority order?

As he said, perhaps a table in the options where users can assign priority? This does sound like a great idea! :slight_smile:

Like this idea. There can be a lot of mouse pointing / clicking when trying to select.

Would be nice that the upper object is automatically selected and the pop up menu is still displayed but only needed if ones wants to change the selection. Perhaps using Tab or cursor keys to switch between. And this could be something one can turn on or off in settings as am sure there are people that like it exactly as it is.

LMB cycles through the list of available objects. RMB accepts selection.

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Yeah… and it would be nice to have the same behavior on the Mac, also…


So does the scroll wheel, but why not get rid of it and make “special” workflow user’s life easier by selecting something right away?

Right now the selection works something like this:
You click on the overlapping objects and Rhino goes: “I’m sorry, I didn’t quite get what you wanted to select. Please, select one out of available options in this list.” EVERY. TIME. Like a bad connection customer service rep.

Hi Asterisk,


First of all, are you familiar with the selection filter feature? I use it more and more to avoid the issue of a popping up selection list when I only want to select certain type of objects on certain layers.

I myself use a combination tools and features to make my selction as straighforward as needed/possibe combining the selection filter, locking layers or objects and set a view to shaded (or not) reduces the noise when selecting.


^ Yes, we’re aware of the filter. Unfortunately, using it in our drafting workflow isn’t too helpful 'cause we’re constantly dealing with curves over surface edges, surfaces over surfaces, texts over surfaces, surface edges, groups etc. turning on and off selection filter for object types will only add more of mouse manipulations.

Hi Asterisk - I hear you, I just wonder if it would be helpful in reality, I need to think about it a little more, I guess.

One possibility that comes to mind is that a depth hierarchy would always win, followed by an object type hierarchy for coincident objects, and you’d NEVER be asked about what to pick unless you ask first, when the first priority object is selected, say by right-click and pick ‘Selection’ or something from a context menu - then you’s get the list of candidates that you get now all the time… I have no idea how realistic that notion is, to implement.


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^ You got it. You might still be able to invoke selection pop-up with let’s say holding LMB in this mode, just like holding RMB can invoke context menu pop-up. Just a thought.

it would nice to have the scroll wheel act on the selection popup without having to move the mouse. as far as priority goes, maybe you can write an script that figures out how the user is prioritizing things? this is the age of ai/machine learning after all.

That works fine here. So does using the LMB without moving the mouse.

I use a Wacom tablet so wim’s LMB and RMB selection would be preferred over the scroll wheel but if both could run concurrently that would be great.

As an addition it would be handy if there was some way to differentiate between overlapping objects as you scroll through the list.

If there are several nearly identical shapes on top of one another the highlight is always yellow (or whatever colour you’ve selected in the prefs)

I really like the way Adobe Illustrator uses the layer’s colour to highlight the selected object. That additional aide-memoire would be invaluable.

In the multi-selection tooltip box, you can have Rhino display more info about the objects, notably object color and layer…



Thank Mitch, that’s really helpful!


How thoughts are going? XD

Hi Pascal

Yes, this is exactly the main point IMO
Feels really annoying when you happen to select the right object , but HAVE to confirm that before going on.

(Now, I’m sure I have already said what follows (maybe more than once … sorry ) … but I’d like to repeat it here, while we’re talking about selection … please bear with me … )

I remember, some 20 years ago, I was using Cimatron, that had a different approach to selection disambiguation.
It worked this way (as far as I can remember):

If you are lucky and happen to select the right object by your (first) click:
Fine, you have nothing more to do and can go on running the command.

If not, clicking left and central mouse buttons together, you circled on the possible objects, which were highlighted one at a time.
When the right object was highlighted:
No confirmation needed, just go on with your command.

And when you have to select ALL the candidate objects at your picked point, you just have to repeat clicking LMB without moving the mouse, any click selecting one more object, in no particular order, until all is highlighted.

I think that such a selection behaviour may sound strange and limited at first, but I think it works well as far as we’re talking of a list of about 2,3,4 selectable objects, which is what happens more often to me (don’t know for other users, obviously)

And I also think that Rhino behaviour is generally much flexible, and clearly superior when we have lists of several selectable objects.
But when you only have 2 objects and are forced to 2 or 3 clicks to select the right one … well, it feels pretty frustrating …

And while I’m talking about weird ideas … :wink:
Another thing that came to my mind when fighting against Rhino ( :wink: ) trying to select what I wanted to select is this:

I usually work in wireframe and usually work with surfaces with coincident edges (for example what you get exploding a polysurf)
And often I need to select a surface by cicking an edge, maybe because there are no isocurves in view, or maybe when I need a point on the edge, or need to select the edge itself.
Let’s suppose that there are two surfaces, A on the right and B on the left, with a common edge.
If I need to select A (on the right), I ‘naturally’ tend to pick slightly on the right of the edge, that is on the side where the surface lies.

Woudn’t it be fine if, in this case, Rhino selected the left surface when picking slightly on the left and the right surface when picking on the right ? :slight_smile:
Hmmm … I think this one might be too complex to do … also beacuse I think almost no one works in wireframe anymore ,
But maybe it might be useful when choosing between surface edges and curves, as Asterisk asked (selecting the edge when picking exaclty on it) … anyway …

… just my two euro cents …


Hi emilio - biasing the selection to one side might be possible but I think (knowing nothing but that does not stop me) it would be hard to make it reliable with only a couple of pixels to deal with. Rhino does something similar in finding, for example the Intersection point of two curves that do not actually intersect in 3d but do on the screen - if you run Point with Int, you can bias the pick when Int lights up to tell Rhino which curve you would like the point to land on. But there is a little more screen area to work with.


Tell me why deselection with Ctrl depressed doesn’t prompt selection pop-up in R5? What rules R5 uses to “auto”-deselect overlapping objects?..