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Re: STEP and v6 roadmap


i think that possibly the advantage of doing the other formats, especialy
if its simple, is it opens up things like using openscad and blender to
build 3d components,  assimp defines a standard internal 3dmesh + metadata
dictionary and then imports/exports all formats too and from that.

On Sun, Dec 1, 2019, 12:10 PM Seth Hillbrand, <seth@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

> On 2019-11-30 18:48, Tim Hawkins wrote:
> Have a look at "assimp",  http://www.assimp.org/  it does STEP too, and a
> whole bunch of 3d model formats both in and out, so it be used to extend
> the range of formats that 3d models can be accepted in or exported.
> Hi Tim-
> Thanks for the link.  I wasn't aware of that project before.
> However, I would not be in favor of extending the range of 3d models
> accepted.  There are a couple reasons here and I'll try to give them
> clearly.
> 1) Our focus is on accepting common formats generated by part
> manufacturers.  Right now, that is STEP.  Some auto-generating sites like
> TE.com will also generate other 3d formats but virtually everyone provides
> As we increase the number of formats, we increase the support time
> for corner cases that don't quite work right.  By focusing on STEP (and to
> a lesser extent VRML), we can spend that extra time improving other aspects
> of KiCad.  I would also be in favor of dropping IGES support but I wouldn't
> push for it.
> 2) Internally, we use OpenCascade for our STEP import/export.  I don't
> really see us re-writing that code unless it becomes untenable.  It's a
> significant investment in multiple areas.
> Related to this, none of the lead devs is terribly integrated in the
> modeling code at the moment.  I suspect that a few of us could muddle
> through some fixes but the two areas using 3d models are two of the least
> coupled areas in the KiCad codebase.  They follow different coding
> conventions, different naming styles and re-implement many areas of the
> common code.  One of my goals during v6 is to bring these both into better
> alignment with the overall codebase to improve their maintainability, test
> coverage and approachability to new devs.
> On a side note, I do plan on implementing the standard .stpz, or
> compressed STEP[1], format during v6.  But this will be in the context of
> OpenCascade.
> Best-
> Seth
> [1] https://www.cax-if.org/documents/rec_prac_file_compression_v11.pdf
> KiCad Services Corporation [image: KiCad Services Corporation Logo]
> Seth Hillbrand
> *Lead Developer*
> +1-530-302-5483‬ <+12126039372>
> Davis, CA
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