Annotate Section and Tabulate Metrics

In this tutorial we will annotate a model by adding section levels and we will produce and emit building metrics to Excel. This is part of the joint exercise of performing a massing study for a building and producing a mold for casting. Interim steps have been presented previously in separate posts.

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Technique

  1. Apply the same logic of slicing solid models to produce contours but this time use the information for creating spread sheets and annotating a building section a-la Building Information Modeling.
  2. Use the AreaMassProperties object to compute all sorts of interesting geometric properties such as mass, area, moments of inertia, centroid etc.
  3. Format and compound text to form a spread sheet table which may be emitted into a panel or copied directly into the clipboard such that it can be pasted into Excel.

Procedure

Remarks

  1. The technique used here is a semi-organized approach to writing multi-phase procedures by storing interim results into collections. For a more complete approach to process structuring see the previous layout exercise which uses simple object-oriented approach.
  2. To decide whether to go for (a) Full spaghetti procedural representation, eg. highly nested loop constructs and computations of the fly, (b) Semi-structured representations, such as here or (c) Fully structured object-oriented representations… use the Litmus test(s): Does it fit in one page? Then use strategy (a); if not then, do you prefer to never write some thing again and again? Then use strategy (c); otherwise stick with (b).
  3. Generally speaking full structure comes with administrative overhead that does not justify the loss of intuition and mental complexity, unless there is a long term plan of reuse, other people that may be collaborating with you etc.
  4. For general design audiences where code quality and standards is not the primary consideration, the approach shown here is highly advisable.