WISH - Groups and polysurfaces workflows


Would it be possible to have a visual clue to make the distinction between groups and polysurfaces?

It is sometimes easy to forget the surfaces you grouped or made into polysurfaces (or combinations of both). After that, workflows such as extracting surfaces from them become a bit cumbersome. There are two different commands to extracts surfaces for each case: ExtractSrf and RemoveFromGroup. I often find myself repeating ExtractSrf command and getting puzzled with the fact that nothing is extracted, only to realise a moment later, that I was trying to get a surface out from a group.

The info is actually available in Object Properties; if what you select is a group or polysrf it will explicitly say so (for joined curves it is oddly less clear; it only says “curve” in Object Propertirs, but says “polycurve” once you click “Details”). However, this info is easy to overlook. Just wondering if there could be a clearer visual clue to make the distinction.

/ Oz

Hello - it may help to just glance at the command line when selecting ‘single’ items - the selection is reported there. (I have not encountered this particular confusion before. ) For the curves, ‘polycurves’ are a subset of the more general ‘curves’ which includes all types of curves, arcs, lines, etc.


Thanks for the tip, Pascal. Indeed, info is present in the command line as well, which is great. There could be still room for improvement, I think. I am a Mac user, the command feedback section is at the very bottom corner of the screen. Working on a large screen, I seldom look at it. I use Object properties panel a lot more. It is also more visible by size and placement, etc. Anyways, my humble opinion is that maybe there is short term and mid term opportunities here:

Short term:

  1. Make the info explicit and consistent: Mention the word “Group” in command feedback bar just like it is mentioned in Object properties panel. Call it polycurves consistently polycurves.
  2. I understand it might bring semantic confusion but why not making ExtractSrf work both for polysurfaces and groups? When you want to extract a surface your intension is quite clear: extracting select surfaces from within more surfaces. Though, I might be wrong here, there might be other workflows where it makes a difference.

Mid term:

  1. Give such info on the objects themselves directly. My bigger wish would be to be able to visually tell object relations directly on themselves without having to look for it. It would be awesome for instance to be able to see what object is matched to what object (When there is history), What object is a group, what is a poly, etc. I was a long time Autodesk Alias user before moving over to Rhino. I really like how it shows object realtions simply by color coding the wireframe (like Color A: Object with history, ColorA/ColorB: objects are in a relationship/matched (with history), ColorA: Object 1 matched to Object 2, Color B: Object 2, Color C: Stitched/polysrf, etc…). Such a color scheme could be worked out.


This seems like it might be ‘doable’ at least.

I doubt we’d get much support for ExtractSrf working in groups , too much potential confusion.

Providing more sophisticated visual feedback on selection, though, has long been on my list if wishes. Separating groups visually in the workspace with some marker like bounding box corners or something seems like a possibility to me.
RH-65076 Show top level grouping


Great! Thanks.

If you need a group of users to think along for the sophisticated visual feedback at some point, I would be more than happy to join/give feedback.