We constantly deliver new features

Version 1.3.1

Thursday, 20 January 2022

Adding smoothness to edges becomes even faster, simpler, and more intuitive! Gaps between faces can now be bridged, and the mouse pointer turns into a Selecting Brush at your will!

New functionalities

  • Bridge patches

    • The bridge command has been extended to fill in gaps between faces with a new face.

User experience improvements:

  • Smart Edge Smoothening

    • You can now quickly smoothen an entire area at once. Clicking on the "Smooth" button will attempt smoothen edges depending on the following criteria, while pressing the Shift key while clicking the button (or hitting the shortcut Shift-T) will do so respecting the position of the vertices:

      • What is selected?

        • Different elements will trigger different results. Specifically:

          • Faces: If a face is selected, adjacent edges will become tangent in pairs.

          • Edges: If edges are selected, the function remains as is: these edges will become tangent in pairs.

          • Vertices: If a vertex is selected, the edges coming out of this vertex will become tangent in pairs. This will not apply to any vertex which has more than 4 edges coming out, or is adjacent to a selected edge.

      • What is the angle?

        • If a pair of edges forms an angle bigger than 45°, then the above changes will not take place for that pair, as it is considered a delibarate design feature

  • Brush select

    • Selecting multiple objects click-free: Keep the "B" (for brush) key pressed, as you simply move your mouse over the model. The objects you hover will be selected.

  • Toggle invisibility

    • "Make invisible" and "Fill patches" have been merged into a single button: "Toggle invisibility".

Hot-key changes:

  • B: Brush-select

  • Shift-T: Smooth with fixed vertices

Version 1.3.0

Wednesday, 12 January 2022

Several new tools to handle and use STL files!

New functionalities:

  • Materialize mirror image

    • A mirror image can now become a new, actual body with the click of a button, and can then be independently edited or moved.

  • Save cropped reference STL model to file

    • Once you have loaded load an STL file, you can use the section planes to crop and save it into a new file (currently it will be downloaded to your file system).

  • Save reduced version of STL model to file (beta)

    • You can reduce the number of the triangles of a loaded STL and save it in a new file.

  • Attach surfaces to STL files (beta)

    • We are releasing a beta version of our new tool for (almost) automatically attaching Phi surfaces to imported reference STL models. This is extremely useful for replicating models, or for designing parts that must fit onto scanned objects. The interface is still rudimentary while we decide what the best workflow is, but we are releasing it because some users already need it.

User experience improvements:

  • Faster loading times

    • Phi should now load faster within the Onshape tab.

  • Auto-detect whether input STL file is ASCII or binary

    • User no longer has to declare the STL they load as binary. This is automatically detected.

Bug fixes:

  • User access (authentication)

    • There was an instance where a properly subscribed user could not fully access Phi due to an issue in the authentication communication between Phi and Onshape. This issue has now been restored and thoroughly tested. Should you encounter any other such problems, please contact us right away!

  • Big STLs can now be opened within Phi

    • Reading STL files in multiple strings to avoid string length limitations imposed by some browsers.

  • Mid-operation autosave

    • Autosave is halted while an operation is taking place.

Version 1.2.1

Monday, 20 December 2021

User experience taken some steps ahead. Check video below:

New functionalities:

  • Always display numbers of selected elements.

    • At any moment, you can look at the top right corner of the interface and know how many vertices, edges and faces are currently selected on scene.

  • Display number of consistency issues.

    • In case Phi identifies potential edge or surface issues, their number is also displayed at the top right corner of the interface.

  • Adding vertices on multiple edges

    • When edges or faces are selected, hovering an edge and hitting the V shortcut will also create one vertex on each selected edge, or any other edge around selected faces.

User experience improvements:

  • User-friendlier selection of default object

    • In the "Default object" selection modal, Size fields have been placed above Shape field, so the selection order is more clearly dictated.

  • Default surfaces lie on the XY plane

    • When a default flat model (square or circle) is loaded, it is oriented vertical to the Z axis.

  • Reference sketches do not overlap

    • Loaded sketches are only visible from one side, so they don’t get in the way.

Hot-key changes:

  • Shift-Delete or Shift-Backspace: Delete selected edge(s) along with any floating vertices left.

Version 1.2.0

Friday, 3 December 2021

New! Edit your model in sectional view:

New functionalities:

  • Sectional View

    • You can now view or work with a section of your model. This functionality consists of two modes: "Setting section planes", where the section is defined by dragging one cutting plane or more through the model, and "Editing model at sectional view".

User experience improvements:

  • All of your files collected in your Onshape document

    • Reference sketches and reference STL models are now loaded via the Onshape document. This means that they are saved in your current document, and will be reloaded automatically when the .phi model is opened again in this document (as the reference models imported from Part Studio do).

  • Check model

    • The interface of the "Check model" functionality (available in Settings) has been redesigned and feedback notes have been added, so that the user can have a simpler overview of the checks. Background improvements have also been implemented.

  • Other improvements

    • We also changed a few interface details, so that it is more clear how certain operations (such as Scaling) work.

Bug fixes:

  • Minor bug fixes

Version 1.1.1

Thursday, 11 November 2021

Improved importing of reference model, configurable zoom sensitivity and non-standard keyboards support:

New functionalities:

  • Educational accounts file sharing with Phenometry

    • This new release includes a change in the application permissions. This was implemented so as to allow our educational users to automatically share with us the documents and files they create, which will help us offer support and guidance, and improve Phi. We will not publicize or share any documents with third parties.

    • Non-educational users will not have their documents and files automatically shared, under any circumstances.

User experience improvements:

  • Zoom sensitivity is now configurable

    • The user can set how fast they will zoom in and out, by adjusting the zoom sensitivity from the Settings menu.

  • Importing reference models improvement

    • For imported reference models (entire Part Studios or Parts independently handled) that are automatically re-opened when you load a Phi model, additional provisions have been made to take care of the case that the internal Onshape IDs have changed (for example, due to making a copy of an entire document). Phi will still identify and load the reference Parts or Part Studios.

Bug fixes:

  • Non-standard keyboards are now supported

    • New keypress handling has been implemented to accommodate non-standard keyboards, such as AZERTY.

Version 1.1.0

Friday, 22 October 2021

Edge discontinuities and other surface issues can now be identified, highlighted for the user, and repaired:

New functionalities:

  • New server infrastructure

    • Sending to Onshape is now faster and there are no size limitations at exporting or importing.

  • New model consistency checks

    • Missing smoothness can be identified according to a defined threshold, highlighted to the user, and automatically improved. A move that will possibly result to one or more faces becoming problematic (e.g. unmanufacturable) can also be automatically interrupted, apart from being highlighted.

Bug fixes

  • Correction in scaling of imported .STL files

Hot-key changes:

  • Better keyboard support

    • Both left and right Shift keys can now be used.

  • Shift-I: Improve model smoothness

Version 1.0.2

Wednesday, 13 October 2021

Import a single part from Onshape, suggest or vote for features with the click of a button, and be warned when you are about to overwrite an existing file:

New functionalities:

  • Selective Import from Onshape Part Studio

    • Can now independently import parts within Part Studios, not just the entire Part Studio, for conversion to Phi or as reference.

  • "Suggest a feature” button added

    • Making a new suggestion for a new feature or improvement, as well as voting for suggestions already made, is now directly accessed from Phi.

User experience improvements:

  • Overwrite prompt when saving to Onshape

    • When saving to Onshape in Phi format, with a name that already exists, user is prompted so that the existing file is not accidentally overwritten.

  • More clear scale definition when importing reference .STL

  • Tooltips and some help texts have been improved

  • Some performance improvements

Hot-key changes:

  • N: Snap to Reference body

  • Ctrl-drag: Pan

Version 1.0.1

Saturday, 10 July 2021

Adding to Symmetry and Offset have been simplified, as demonstrated in this short video:

New functionalities:

  • Elements can be removed from the Symmetry Set

    • Isolated pairs of edges or faces can be removed from the Symmetry Set , while the rest of its elements remain intact.

User experience improvements:

  • You can now add edges in any order

    • Phi now automatically assigns added elements to each symmetry side, so you can select them in any order you want. This also means you can add many edges or faces together, using the Shift or the A shortcuts. What is more, Phi accommodates color uniformity on each side of the symmetry plane.

  • Offset definition requires two clicks only

    • Simply click on one of the vertices of the loop to be offset, and click again when the offset preview satisfies you.

Hot-key changes:

  • Ctrl+S: Save as

  • Υ: Add to Symmetry Set

Version 1.0

Monday, 21 June 2021

First public release of Phi! Many thanks to all our Beta Users for your feedback.

A new, simple interface for dimensioning your design.

This short video introduces the new dimensioning interface, and then discusses other tools for dimensioning and precision:

New functionalities:

  • A new, simple interface for dimensioning your design

    • Select an edge or a pair of vertices, and use them to give dimensions to a body or parts of it. Supports proportional or non-proportional rescaling

User experience improvements:

  • Check before clearing symmetries

    • A confirmation dialog makes sure you don't accidentally lose your symmetry sets.

  • Shift-click on edges also uses smoothness information

    • When forming edge chains using shift-click, we now take into account smoothness information, and not only topology, to build better chains.

Bug fixes:

  • Symmetry bug

    • We fixed a bug that was causing face shapes not to update correctly while dragging symmetric edges.

Version 0.37.1

Friday, 28 May 2021

New functionality to make a face and an edge meet tangentially on a T-junction. Improvements to handling addition of vertices and crosshairs.

This 2-minute video gives a quick overview of most of the recent changes:

New functionalities:

  • Smoothness between faces and edges:

    • Select a face and an edge, and make them meet tangentially to give smoothness to their junction.

User experience improvements:

  • Better handling addition of vertices and crosshair:

    • A faster and more precise user experience.

Version 0.36.0

Friday, 21 May 2021

New functionality for adding vertices at same level as existing vertices, or at fractions of the edge length in pairs, including on many edges together (see animation below). New implementation of crosshair. New shortcuts, and other improvements.

New functionalities:

  • Easier addition of vertices:

    • Repeatedly hit shift while hovering over edge to display regular subdivision intervals. Hit V near any of them to add pair of vertices at symmetric intervals. If many edges are selected, vertices will be added on all. Also select existing vertex and then hover over edge with shift pressed to get indication of point at same X, Y or Z value. Hit V to add vertex at that point.

  • New crosshair implementation:

    • Crosshairs are now added on regular intervals of edge length.

  • Improved smoothening behaviour:

    • A more efficient implementation of smoothening of entire edge chains.

User experience improvements:

  • Labels in settings menu:

    • Labels added for easier viewing of settings menu items.

Hot-key changes:

  • Q, W, R to view elements:

    • Hit Q, W, R to show or hide vertices, edges and faces respectively.

  • T for edge smoothness:

    • Hit T to make selected edge chains smooth or smoother.

Version 0.35.0

Tuesday, 4 May 2021

Significant new improvements including: New smoothness for edges and faces; Model consistency checks and guards; Separation of inner and outer space; Multi-face bridges; and new intuitive object dragging.

This short video gives a quick overview of most of the changes:

Major improvements:

  • New smoothness for edges and faces:

    • Direct, simple and intuitive control of smoothness for edges and faces, giving better results through simplified tools.

  • More natural dragging behaviour:

    • Dragging objects now gives more expected deformations, preserves flatness where possible, and avoids movements in and out of the screen

  • Separation of inner and outer space:

    • The inside surfaces of all objects are rendered in a different color (red) to give a more obvious separation of the inside and outside space. Helps identify consistency issues and better understand freeform geometric constructions.

New Functionalities:

  • Multi-face bridging:

    • Bridge between sets consisting of different numbers of faces.

  • Guards in model consistency checks: 

    • Set guards to interrupt dragging when model consistency checks fail.

Version 0.34.1

Wednesday, 21 April 2021

Two functionalities are added: Consistency checks, and snapping to body. The system also disconnects after inactivity. Also various improvements and bug fixes.

New Functionalities:

  • Model consistency checks:

    • You can now run consistency checks on your model to indentify problems such as edges that are excessively twisted or have high curvature, or extremely short. You can either run them on demand, or automatically after every operation.

  • Snapping bodies: 

    • You can now make a body snap onto another body by selecting vertices, edges or faces that you want to match

  • Automatically disconnect after inactivity:

    • The application will now disconnect after a long period of inactivity

Version 0.34.0

Thursday, 15 April 2021

Use the new curvature combs to inspect edges while you manipulate them.

New Functionalities:

  • Curvature combs:

    • You can now display curvature combs on one or more edges, and see them interactively change as you change the edge shape.

Version 0.33.0

Friday, 9 April 2021

You can now merge bodies by sharing an edge . A couple of hotkeys were also changed to allow compatibility with other packages. Finally some visual improvements with 0-thickness surfaces.

New Functionalities:

  • Merge Bodies on Edge:

    • Allows merging two bodies by selecting two edges, one on each, and joining them on those edges.

Hot-key Changes:

  • F: Fit all body into view (shortcut to View All button).

  • X: Fix or unfix items (was previously F).

Other Improvements:

  • 0-thickness surfaces:

    • Better visualization, avoiding Z-fighting artifacts.

Version 0.32.1

Monday, 29 March 2021

Stepwise rotation with arrow keys. Panning follows mouse movement. Improved menu design.

New Functionalities:

  • Rotate in place with arrow keys:

    • Allows merging two bodies by selecting two edges, one on each, and joining them on those edges.

Icon and menu changes:

  • Menu appearance:

    • Any button containing menus appear with a line underneath them. If any items in the menus are active, the lines light up in bright yellow.

  • Mirror command:

    • Changed the icon.

Other Improvements:

  • Panning speed 1-1 with mouse movements:

    • Regardless of zoom level, when panning the model movement follows exactly the mouse movement.

  • Color picker:

    • Improved interface for picking face colors.

Version 0.32.0

Tuesday, 9 March 2021

A major upgrade as a result of the feedback received from the first batch of beta users. Thank you!

New functionalities, changes to the user interface, many improvements and bug fixes all over.

This short video gives a quick overview of most of the changes:

New Functionalities:

  • Sending Phi models as closed bodies to Onshape:

    • Onshape has some specific strict requirements for the format to translate Phi models into Onshape Part Studios. Sometimes these were not met, so we changed the format to comply with Onshape and Phi models are now consistently translated into closed bodies, as they should.The left/right and up/down arrow keys now rotate stepwise around 'center of mass'.

  • Units and model scale:

    • When starting, importing, exporting models, units and scale are now handled more consistently.

  • Enabling/disabling tooltips:

    • We added a control in the Preferences menu for enabling/disabling tooltips, as they were sometimes getting in the way of users who didn’t feel they needed them.

  • Faces made invisible, not deleted:

    • This is a point that caused confusion, as faces are not actually deleted, they are made invisible (and can be made visible again). A separate button was added for this. Instead of deleting faces one must dissolve faces into one.

  • Symmetry and mirror planes on any face:

    • Any face can now be used as reference for symmetry or mirror planes. 

  • Pop-out / thicken command:

    • We added a version of the pop-out that removes all other faces except the ones being popped-out, to simulate a thickening from a 0-thickness surface.

  • More features for coordinates:

    • We added more functionalities for displaying and directly setting the coordinates of vertices and moving objects.

  • Setting decimal places to display:

    • Can set the number of decimal places to display for any number or coordinate value.

  • Option to break tangencies when fairing edges:

    • In the window where you set the fairing strength you can also declare that any tangencies at the ends of the chain of edges being faired should be broken, to obtain different results.

  • Scale factor when loading default model:

    • We added a small interface for declaring the scale/dimensions of the default models being loaded.

Icon, menu and user interface changes:

  • Tutorial contents and hotkeys in sidebar:

    • Contents of each tutorial video added in separate tab for easier search. An additional tab shows all the hotkeys (shortcuts) in the sidebar, next to the tutorial videos.

  • New hotkeys for temporarily hiding vertices edges: 

    • Hitting Q or W will hide or show the vertices or edges, to help object selection when there are too many.

  • Hotkeys in Floating toolbar:

    • Hotkeys now appear within floating toolbar.

Other Improvements:

  • High CPU usage due to video codec:

    • We had reports of very high CPU usage in some browser/OS combinations. Turned out this was due to the short animations in our Phi tooltips that were encoded in a way that some browsers had trouble rendering. We re-encoded them and the problem was solved.

  • Symmetry bug fix:

    • Fixed a bug that sometimes came up when declaring symmetries.

  • Better grid behaviour:

    • We made the grid become gray when not viewing it down the X, Y or Z direction, to indicate that it’s not active, i.e. you cannot use it for snapping.

  • Lighting improvements:

    • Our initial placement of lights around the model was found to be sometimes confusing, so we replaced that with a simpler setup that follows the camera’s viewpoint.

  • Change in 'Delete Vertex' behaviour:

    • Deleting a vertex with only two edges on it will delete the vertex. When there are more than two edges, it will also delete the edges.

  • Shift-click to unfix all selected elements:

    • Shift-clicking on the “fix” icon will un-fix selected elements.

  • Improved coordinate axis appearance:

    • The coordinate axes/planes now have constant dimensions on the screen, regardless of zoom level.

  • Change in 'Draw Linear Edge' and 'Linear Carve' behaviour:

    • You now need to hit “Shift-E” or “Shift-C” to start a linear edge or a linear carve, but you no longer need to keep the shift key pressed during the mouse move where you trace the cut.

  • Part Studio reference models will automatically import:

    • When you reload a .phi file, it will automatically read in any Part Studios you had imported.