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  • Frans Basson

GEM4D Version available for download

Updated: Dec 15, 2019

My time for programming was very limited the past year, and I had to make it work with small time windows between other responsibilities. This resulted in a higher frequency of small bugs, at I did not have the luxury of extended focused sessions. I also struggled to update the Blog each time I published a new version of GEM4D. Apologies for that, I will attempt to manage this better in future.

Version was published before, but I did not update the Blog and thus incorporate all the changes into this blog. Version contains a big upgrade to the graphics and require the latest graphics drivers for your computer, follow "Steps" from a Google search for "How to update graphics card drivers".

Many thanks this month to TB, PC, EH, JV, KdP, KB, HA, TL, KD, GL, GS, PS, ES, JD, MN, CP, RJ, KMW, JG, GM, JW, WB, PN, NB, GB, RB and TP.

New functionality

  • Meshes can now be split by rubberband selection with "Top toolbar => Arrow pick icon => Split polys out by rubberband". As always, use "Ctrl" to reposition after the function is selected, and "Shift" for multiple selections. See the Discussion 1 at the bottom of the blog.

  • Add "Tablet Mode" bottom toolbar to use of GEM4D on a tablet in an operational environment. This is only the start of this functionality and will be expanded in future.

  • Transform meshes by three-point selection using "Interface bottom right => Transform". This is useful when lining up meshes from photogrammetry or laser scanning with their actual spacial locations. Early days for this functionality, please let me know if the transformation does not work correctly for your data set.

  • Add an reverse arrow option to mapping representations with "Mapping => Orientation shape => ArrowRev". Mapping data from a file can thus now be presented as points, discs, normal arrows, reverse arrows, and combined discs and normal arrows.

  • Drape images onto surfaces with "Ribbon => Image => Actions => Drape image". This functionality is in an early stage of development and could still be buggy.

  • The "Status bar" at the bottom of the form now has an additional button to open additional "GEM4D" instances. I often open more than one GEM4D instance, change a file in the one GEM4D-instance, and then load the changed file in another GEM4D-instance.

  • Right click on a loaded DXF-file and select "Change coordinate system" from the drop-down list to change the coordinate system for the selected file.


  • Major improvements to the legend bars displayed when colouring meshes with "Top toolbar => Colour palette icons" or when loading "Ribbon => Marker/Mapping" data. The legend bars are now thinner and the associated text stays the same size and are easier to read. See the Discussion 2 at the bottom of the blog.

  • Major improvements to the directional compass widget and associated text displayed when pressing the "Top toolbar => Compass icon"-toggle button. See Discussion 1 & 2 at the bottom of the blog.

  • When loading "Ribbon => Marker/Mapping" data and displaying them as points with "Marker/Mapping => Shape => Point" now show square points, no longer the round points displayed by some graphics cards.

  • After loading data with "Ribbon => Marker/Mapping", selected data displayed as points with "Marker/Mapping => Shape => Point" are now significantly larger and always fully opaque. To differentiate between selected and unselected points, make the points transparent before selecting points from the grid or picking in the scene. See the Discussion 2 at the bottom of the blog.

  • "Ribbon => Settings => Lightning and shading" now only affects mesh objects loaded from DXF-files, and not markers and mapping objects.

  • Changes to the selections available from "Top toolbar => Crossed swords icon". The same options are available as before, but the selection is made form the bottom drop-down box.

  • The icon used for colour picking at the bottom of "Files and Objects" area were changed to the picker icon used in most other software packages.

  • The opacity/transparency slider "Ribbon => Image => Opacity => Slider" worked differently to other opacity sliders in GEM4D and was changed to conform to the default logic.

Bug fixes

  • Deleting triangles by selected areas "Top toolbar => Arrow pick icon => Delete inside/outside rubberband" occasionally gave unexpected outcomes - fixed.

  • When exporting regular grids, the "Ribbon => Marker => Save and Export => Other options => Regular grid points (CSV)" button did not always ungrey as expected - fixed.

  • Exporting sections to RocScience did not always ungrey the "Ribbon => Mesh => Save DXF => Other => Rocscience section ..." buttons as expected - fixed.

  • Changing the coordinate system with the "GEM4D Coordinate system" pop-up box when loading new files did not change the coordinate system as expected - fixed.

  • When the interface settings file corrupts (or the settings file format changes in future) the file now fixes itself without persistent error messages - fixed.

  • Attempting to colour meshes when none were loaded crashed the program - fixed.

  • Various interface corrections and optimisations - fixed.

Discussion 1: "Top toolbar => Arrow pick icon => Split polys out by rubberband"

To achieve the image below, select "Top toolbar => Arrow pick icon => Split polys out by rubberband", press the "Shift" button and select an area on the existing mesh. Re-position the mesh by pressing "Ctrl" and let go of the "Shift"-button to temporary de-activate the action. Press "Shift" again and let go of "Shift" to select a new portion of the mesh etc.

Select portions of a mesh with each selection as a separate object

Discussion 2: Selected data and updated scalar bar and compass

Loading data with "Ribbon => Marker/Mapping", selected data in the grid and display as points with "Marker/Mapping => Shape => Point". The selected points are now significantly larger than the unselected points and always fully opaque. To differentiate between the selected and unselected points, make the points transparent with the slider before selecting points from the grid (or picking in the scene).

Selected Marker/Mapping data is larger and always opaque
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