Parametric Patterns III: Reactor



The continuing saga of translating Parametric Design Patterns to Revit


“Make an object respond to the proximity of another object.”

Some of this functionality has been covered in the posting on Jigs.  The functionality as accessed through the UI really only became possible in Revit 2011, with the creation of Reporting Parameters.  This special kind of instance parameter allows a family to react to the specific context in which it was hosted.

Vector Field

“Rotate a bound vector as a controlling point moves, so that it always has the same angle to the point. Replicate to define a vector field.”

Vector Field


Circle Radii and Point Interactor

“Control the size of a set of circles by proximity to a point.”

Here is a quick video showing the same kind of operation, but instead of using the out-of-the-box functionality in the UI, I have a small plugin that detects the distance between a target element and a curtain panel instance and writes that distance to the panel.  This allows for scaling the operation to a larger field.

Circle Radii and Point Interactor


Vector Field.rfa

Circle Radii and Point Interactor.rfa

Distance to Panel Plugin and instructions

Further Reading:

Using the distance to panel plugin


  1. Catching up on the recent posts.. these are excellent!

    Just wish I had these videos at ACADIA - Grasshopper party tricks in full effect, and there's people that still think Revit doesn't have points.

  2. All of these videos are excellent ... and the images in eye candy are mind blowing works .. Adaptive points in Revit rocks !!!

  3. Thank you for your wonderful tips.
    But I think I cannot do the same as this tutorial in Revit 2012(Japanese) somehow.

    I can create 2 adaptive dots with circle or perpendicular line, but when I loaded it into new project file(mass template), and place it onto the reference point, the 1st dot cannot be attached to the reference point. Besides, when I place 2 families, I cannot select only the 1st points of the 2 families. When I tried to do so, the whole family moves and those don't react like this tutorial..

    Do you know how I can fix it?

  4. HI Masaru. I have seen a bug where point hosting just stops working during a Revit session. Hard to reproduce, seems to happen after having had the same session open for a long time, but when it has happened, I find that when I restart the problem disappears. Try that?

  5. I unzipped the 'distance to panel' plugin files to the right location, but receive an error message stating the .dll file does not exist (even though it is in the folder). Any idea how to fix it?

  6. Hi John,
    The addin that I posted here might be out of date, I think it is for Revit 2011/Vasari 1. I don't have an updated version of this particular tool, but the r2012 SDK has an updated dll in it.


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