Computational Groups with Dynamo

In this section we will leverage the computational power of Dynamo to place and modify flexible groups.

If you did not complete the last section, download and open the farnsworth06.axm file from the FormIt Primer folder.

You can learn more here about how FormIt and Dynamo work together for computational design workflows.

Place and Modify Dynamo Content

  1. Open the Dynamo Palette in the Palette Bar

  2. You should see a few built-in Dynamo objects in the Dynamo Samples directory

  3. Single click the Stairs Dynamo sample. FormIt will run the graph behind-the-scenes and generate the stair geometry from this graph. Note that you can also link local directories containing Dynamo graphs, and run your own local Dynamo graphs just like these samples.

  4. Once the stair is loaded, move your cursor over the canvas, near the terrace. Click to place the stair. Click Esc to clear the selection

  5. Edit the Simple Stair group, just like you would a normal group, by double clicking into it

  6. The Properties Palette automatically toggles to view the stair's parameters. Modify the settings so they are the same as below (you might see more settings than this):

Locate the Stair Group

  1. Single click to select the stairs, click one of the top corners to start the move tool

  2. Move the top of the stairs so it aligns with the edge of the terrace

  3. Next, center the stairs between the two columns. This could be done with guide lines as we did in the previous exercise, but we'll introduce the Measure (ME) tool

  4. Start the Measure (ME) tool. Your first click should be the edge of the lower terrace. This is where you are measuring from

  5. You second click should be the mid point of the stair. A dimension string will appear

  6. Press the Tab key and enter 16' 7". The measure tool will move the geometry using the reference and target points you provided

Locate the Upper Stair Group

  1. Single click to select the stair group, click the same mid point to start the move tool

  2. Press the Ctrl key once to make a quick copy - and move the ghost preview geometry to the upper terrace

  3. Right click on copied group and select Make Unique (M U)

  4. Double click to edit the copied group. Change the Floor to Floor height setting to 1.75. You will need to move the stairs up to align with the upper terrace floor

  5. Create a new layer called stairs and put both stairs on that layer

  6. Paint both of the stair groups with the material Travertine to match the floors