Wednesday, September 16, 2009


I've packaged up a tarball to make a first release of idfeditor, an application to create and edit the configuration files for Energy Plus building simulation. It can be found at The first release is very basic allowing editing of most elements of the configuration file.

Next is to simplify viewing and editing the building geometry. Energy Plus has a few different ways to represent the information. One way is vertices, with a building element made up of a series of 3d points. The points can be relative to a building basepoint, or zone, the points can be clockwise, counter clockwise, starting at any of the four corners, etc. Or there is another way which has azimuth or facing angle, tilt, origin, length, width. Again from origin. It is quite flexible, meaning quite complicated and error prone.

Right now I'm working on translating the various input types into xyz space, something suitable to transforming, rotating and such. The first goal is to get the code to the point where it reads and writes the data reliably with all the defined input types. The math is fun. I vaguely remember learning all this stuff in school, and have the horrifying memory of doing the calculations on a slide rule. I can't honestly say that it is coming back, that would assume there was some memory remaining. It is all pretty basic vector geometry.

Monday, September 07, 2009

Almost ready to release

Almost ready for the first release of Energy Plus frontend, idfeditor. The link lists the features that are done. I'm in the process of testing by building and editing a simulation, and am finding the odd thing that needs fixing. There are many things I want to do to make creating a simulation easier, but they will have to come in future versions. Anyone who wants to test can checkout the svn tree and run "python".

One issue that I'm not sure about is regular crashes when calling QFileDialog. It doesn't crash each time it is called, but seemingly random. The traceback shows a call to free() in Qt. The PyQt folks may have some ideas, but has anyone else run into this? I'm not sure if it my Arch Linux setup which is somewhat bleeding edge.

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