Arguably the best thing to ever happen to computing was the Graphical User Interface or the GUI. It took away the massive lines of code that you previously had to deal with while computing and replaced it with the windows and folders and files we see today. This new interface made it easy to interact with the computer, allowing pretty much everyone to jump on board the new technology at the time. CATIA is doing the same for parametric designing. Equipped with an intuitive no-code and algorithmic approach, the new CATIA Visual Scripting app within 3DEXPERIENCE Platform empowers its hardcore users even more with an easier, more visual way to build out their complex designs.
Visual Scripting isn’t completely new to the design community, with software like Grasshopper being in the mainstream. However, CATIA’s sheer power as an industry-leading all-round CAD software combined with its new no-code visual approach to parametric/generative modeling really alters the landscape for designers, engineers, architects, etc. looking to push their creative boundaries. The company did launch a similar web-app named xGenerative Design, but with Visual Scripting, algorithmic design becomes a native part of the 3DEXPERIENCE, and seamlessly integrated into the rest of CATIA applications.
What sets CATIA Visual Scripting apart is its capacity to empower creators. Through a series of building blocks, designers can craft their own scripts, which in turn generate intricate 3D geometries autonomously. The interface takes on a familiar Node-based approach that most designers will find incredibly intuitive. With the tool’s Capture & Reuse feature, these algorithms become shareable and reusable assets, markedly enhancing both efficiency and collaboration across projects.
Users can intuitively link parameter blocks, defining and generating designs without writing a single line of code. The user interface is accessible to those without any programming knowledge, making complex design creation more comfortable and attainable. It also makes rapid conceptualization much easier, allowing you to quickly adjust parameters and alter your design/pattern on the fly, without editing code or rebuilding your model. It’s also the best way to rapidly generate tons of design alternatives and it’s natively built to serve the MODSIM approach, combining modeling and simulation in an integrated loop.
“CATIA Visual Scripting is not only a really powerful tool to quickly add a lot of details to designs. Its capabilities push the limits of traditional modeling with a suite of specialized operators to offer new possibilities for highly detailed and innovative designs. Creators can now also manipulate and deform meshes directly in the application, to find new interesting shapes without any sculpting interaction” mentions Edouard Sutre, CATIA Design R&D. Yet another example of the specialized operator is that the algorithm can create the architecture of lines used for complex, customized and non-regular lattice generation for 3D printing.
“CATIA Visual Scripting aids creators in all industries, not only for aerospace, architecture, or transportation”, Edouard adds. “We are empowering those in the shoe, furniture and product industries as well, for example. The tool can extend from designing buildings and huge city plans to smartphones and even jewelry.”