Geo data in Grasshopper, the Beauty of Data Visualizations and the Future of our Cities

This is another post in the Morphocode Picks series, collecting some of the most interesting stuff that we’ve shared recently on facebooktwitter and google+.



Geo data in Grasshopper

Heron is a new add-on for Grasshopper that allows you to import Geographical data in Rhino and Grasshopper.
Importing shapefiles, topographies and geo-coding are among the most interesting features of the add-on.

Get Heron for Grasshopper



modern beauty data visualization

The Modern Beauty of 19th-Century Data Visualizations

Vintage Visualizations is a project that reproduces a number of the LOC’s Civil War-era data visualizations in high-quality poster prints.

Learn More




On being smart about cities

Smart About Cities is a new book by Maarten Hajer and Ton Dassen discussing the future of cities. The book gives a great overview of the challenges that urbanism is facing today and contains a series of beautiful infographics.
Maarten Hajer argues that understanding the history of urbanism is critical for the debate on the future of our cities. “The problems contemporary cities are facing may seem daunting. But they are not without precedent.”

Order the book



Drawing and Data Visualizations

Giorgia Lupi – design director at Accurat talks about the importance of visual inspiration and the act of drawing.
“I see design as a way to translate a structural concept for a specific audience, through a specific medium; design for me is also the process of visual planning and organizing the choices made along the way of a project, given its specific boundaries.”

Read the Interview



Joost Grootens—On Creative Mapping

In an interview for Gestalten, dutch graphic designer Joost Grootens talks about the creative mapping and editorial design.

Watch on Vimeo




Global Trends of Urbanization

The number of mega-cities has nearly tripled since 1990; and by 2030, 41 urban agglomerations are projected to house at least 10 million inhabitants each.
Just three countries — India, China and Nigeria – together are expected to account for 37 per cent of the projected growth of the world’s urban population between 2014 and 2050.

Read more



The Uses of Big Data in Cities

“The Uses of Big Data in Cities” by Luís Bettencourt explores how big data can be useful in urban planning by formalizing the planning process as a general computational problem.

Read the paper


Rabbit 0.4 released. Now without limitations.

We have just released Rabbit 0.4 – the latest version of our plug-in for Grasshopper. The new release is the first step in the process of open-sourcing the plug-in.


No Limits

Rabbit 0.4 no longer have expiry date. This release also removes the maximum grid size limit, so that you can fully explore cellular automata. As usual, Rabbit is freely available for download on our site.

Get it here


Join us on GH

We have created a new user group on Grasshopper3d. This will make it easy for you to get updates about Rabbit and the latest tutorials in Morphocode Academy.

Join the group


Rabbit for Grasshopper going open source

Rabbit – our beloved plug-in for Grasshopper will soon get an update! The most important thing is that we will open source the plug-in.

Rabbit is written in C# and is based on the Rhino & Grasshopper SDK. The code will be published on github so that anyone will be able to contribute and help improve the plug-in. We will also remove all limitations related to the grid size.

Adding more features is also on the todo list, so if you have any specific requirement in mind – share it in the comments bellow or on the Rabbit page.

Open sourcing will happen gradually as we need to review the current codebase and update it for the latest versions of Grasshopper and Rhino. Stay tuned for updates!


Parametric Design Workshop in Sofia

On 17th & 18th of may, we held a two-day intensive workshop with Rhino & Grasshopper in Sofia, Bulgaria.

The event took place in Fabrica 126, where we introduced the participants to different techniques and tools for design and digital fabrication.

Similarly to our workshops in Frankfurt and Venice, we started with a short lecture and worked through a series of real-world examples that showcase the use of Rhino and Grasshopper in the design process.

Here are a few photos from the event:





The Workshop – Online

We plan to release an online video course covering the use of parametric tools in the design process. Make sure to subscribe for Morphocode Academy and we’ll notify you when the course becomes available.


Parametric Design Workshop in Sofia

We are happy to announce that Morphocode will teach a two day parametric design workshop in Sofia, Bulgaria.
The participants will learn new tools and techniques for design and digital fabrication using Rhinoceros, Grasshopper and Rabbit.

The event will take place in Fabrica 126  on 17th & 18th of may 2014. 


There are no seats left for this event.

Want to participate, but cannot attend?

We’ll publish the workshop contents online. Subscribe for Morphocode Academy now  and we’ll notify you when the course becomes available.

Subscribe Now.

RABBIT 0.2 preview : 2d/3d LSystems + Turtle Interpretation

music: “The Slackers”

Exploring LSystems in 3D

MORPHOCODE is working on the new release of RABBIT – our plug-in for Rhino & Grasshopper. The upcoming release contains new powerful tools: LSystem component and a 3D Turtle Interpreter component.

With RABBIT 0.2 by MORPHOCODE you would be able to create different types of LSystems: (deterministic, stochastic, context-free, parametric) and visualize them as geometry structures.

Few images produced with RABBIT 0.2:



What is an LSystem?

In Brief: LSystem is a parallel string rewriting system. A string rewriting system consists of an initial string, called the seed, and a set of rules for specifying how the symbols in a string are rewritten as (replaced by) strings. Let’s have a look at a simple LSystem:

seed: A


A = AB

B = BA

The LSystem starts with the seed ‘A’ and iteratively rewrites that string using the production rules. On each iteration a new word is derived.

n is the derivation length = the number of iterations

n=0: A

n=1: AB

n=2: ABBA



All these  words form the language of the LSystem.

Application of LSystems

Since their original formulation, L-systems have been adapted to modelling a wide range of phenomena including:

  • herbaceous plants
  • neural networks
  • the procedural design of cities
  • generative art
  • generative music

There exist different types of LSystems: deterministic, stochastic, context-free, context-sensitive, parametric, timed-depending on the rules and the way they are applied by the LSystem.

For more info about LSytems, we strongly suggest the following resources:



What is a Turtle Interpreter?

In Brief:

The derivation strings of developing L-systems can be interpreted as a linear sequence of instructions (with real-valued parameters in the case of parametric L-systems) to a ‘turtle’, which interprets the instructions as movement and geometry building actions. The historical term turtle interpretation comes from the early days of computer graphics, where a mechanical robot turtle (either real or simulated), capable of simple movement and carrying a pen, would respond to instructions such as ‘move forward’, ‘turn left’, ‘pen up’ and ‘pen down’. Each command modifies the turtle’s current position, orientation and pen position on the drawing surface. The cumulative product of commands creates the drawing.

RABBIT 0.2 provides a 3d Turtle Interpreter: the “turtle”  moves and draws graphics in 3d. The TurtleInterpreter could be used by itself or together with the LSystem component giving you the opportunity to explore new designs.

Feel free to comment here !

RABBIT: Tools for Grasshopper v.0.1.00 Released!

MORPHOCODE is pleased to announce the first release of RABBIT – a new plug-in for Grasshopper! RABBIT provides a new toolbar with custom components that could solve specific design problems. RABBIT v.0.1.00 contains 6 new components that could produce multiple Cellular Automata variations such as: 2X2, 34 Life, Amoeba, Assimilation, Coagulations, Conway’s Life(ghx included), Coral, Day&Night, Diamoeba, Flakes, Gnarl, HighLife, InverseLife, Long life, Maze, Mazectric, Move, Pseudo life, Replicator, Seeds (2), Stains, WalledCities…. The first release includes also a small list of pre-defined patterns.

This release works with version 0.6.0043 of Grasshopper and is freely distributable package licensed under Creative Commons License.