Grasshopper, the “generative history” plugin for McNeel’s Rhinoceros v4 sr4 was released today (Oct 10, 2008).  Grasshopper essentially exploits Rhino’s history engine, the part of the program which is being developed to record associations between geometry.  It is a ver interesting way to work in Rhino, and although in its infancy, it is already proving to be very powerful.

This new version has a number of additions, including the much anticipated “scripting” component where by users can program their own algorithms within a Grasshopper definition with VB.NET or C#.NET.  Another addition which facilitates this scripting is a new file format that takes the form of an XML file.  Users can open this file in a text editor (Context is recommended as WordPad substituted some characters), and edit its human-readable code.

The example above is pretty rudimentary, but shows the new .ghx file format open on the right with a tiny bit of VB.NET, then the .ghx file open in the Grasshopper interface within Rhino.  The VB.NET component is outputting the “Hello World” text that was programmed.

This new version is currently being downloaded by many eager Grasshopper and Scripting fans alike, so be on the lookout for some interesting stuff.  Thanks to McNeel and expecially David Rutten for continuing to innovate on this exciting frontier!

GrassHopper Tutorials
GrassHopper Google Group