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Create Object Selections

When you perform an operation in Simplebim you most often have to specify which selection of objects this operation applies to. You could be including or excluding a selection of objects, setting a property value for a selection of objects, colorizing a selection of objects, calculating a quantity for a selection of objects etc.

There are two main types of selections: temporary and permanent. The permanent selections are stored with the  model, which means they are later available to you or anyone else. Temporary selections are used either for performing an action or for creating permanent selections.

Temporary selections


  • Click and Ctrl+Click selection: Simplebim uses the same multi-selection logic as Windows Explorer. Click on an item to select it. Hold down the Ctrl key to add objects to the selection. Click on an already selected object with the Ctrl key down to remove it from the selection.
  • Shift+Click selection: Whenever you have a list of items, you can select consecutive items by clicking on the first item, holding down the Shift key and clicking on the second item. This will select all items between the first and second item, including the first and second item.
  • Tree selection limitation: Whenever you have a hierarchical tree of items, such as a classification system, the selection can only contain items from the same branch on the same level. For example in the Objects palette you cannot make a selection that has both Object Classes and Type Objects in it, and in the Properties palette you cannot make a selection that has both Properties and Property Values in it.

3D Window

  • You can use the normal click and Ctrl+click selections
  • Clear Selection: Click on an empty area in the 3D window to clear the selection.
  • Area Selection: You can start the area selection in 3D from the 3D ribbon menu or with the A -shortcut key when  the 3D window has focus. Draw the selection rectangle from left to right to select all objects that touch the rectangle. Draw from right to left to select only objects that are completely inside the rectangle. The orthogonal projection mode allows you to make more accurate area selections than the perspective projection.
  • Quick Select: The Quick Select in the 3D window allows you to quickly select objects based on a sample. If the Quick Select is for example ‘Building Storey’, and you select one object, then all other object from the same building storey are selected as well. There are many Quick Select options available out-of-the-box, but you can even create your own.
  • All Visible Objects: You can create your selection visually by showing and hiding objects in the 3D Window. When only the objects you want to select are visible you can select all visible objects from the menu bar at the bottom of the 3D window or using the shortcut Ctrl+A.
  • Invert: Sometimes it is also practical to select all the objects you do not want to select and then invert the selection. This can be done from menu bar at the bottom of the 3D window

Objects Palette

  • You can use the normal Click, Ctrl+Click and Shift+Click selections.
  • The tree selection limitation applies.

Properties Palette

  • You can use the normal Click, Ctrl+Click and Shift+Click selections.
  • The tree selection limitation applies.
  • Property Value: The Properties palette automatically creates object selections based on property values. If the Properties palette is for example showing all space objects, then the Space Name property will show a list of unique space names found in the model. Within this list for example the value ‘Office’ is a actually a selection of all space objects in the model that have the value ‘Office’ as the Space Name. The Properties palette can be used for showing the properties of any selection of objects, not just an Object Class. If all your objects have for example the same Material property, then the Properties palette can automatically create a selection of all objects where the material is for example ‘Concrete’.
  • Isolate and Invert: You can select one or more Property Values and in the right click menu, or the menu bar on the top of the Properties palette, select Isolate to hide all other values from the Properties palette. You can also do the inverse and hide the selected Property Values.
  • All objects: You can make a selection from all objects in the model. Here you can choose if the selection should contain assemblies/containers or single objects, for example if a curtain wall should be in your selection or all the panels and members of the curtain wall.
  • Filter: You can filter the contents of the Properties palette using the filter in the upper left hand corner of the palette. Once a filter is set, only objects that pass the filter are included in the selections you make using any of the selection techniques.

 Containment Palette

  • You can use the normal Click, Ctrl+Click and Shift+Click selections.
  • The tree selection limitation applies.
  • Container: Selecting any item in the containment tree will select that item, for example selecting a building storey will select the building storey object, not the objects contained by that building storey.
  • Contained Objects: When you select the container object, all geometries contained by that container are selected in the 3D Window. The Quick Select in the 3D Window then determines the actual selection. For example if you select a Building Storey in the Containment palette and the Quick Select in the 3D Window is set to ‘Single Object’, then all the objects contained by that Building Storey are selected in the 3D Window.

Table Palette

  • You can use the normal Click, Ctrl+Click and Shift+Click selections.
  • The tree selection limitation applies when the Table palette is grouped by a property
  • Group: You can group the rows in the Table palette by any combination of properties. Clicking on the header row of the group will select all objects in that group
  • Filter: You can use the Filters for each of the properties shown in the Table palette for filtering what is shown in the Table palette. Selecting all rows (Ctrl+A) will select only the rows that are visible in the Table palette, and thus all the objects associated with those visible rows.

Permanent Selections


  • In Simplebim everything you see in the Objects palette, that is not an Object Class, is an Object Group.
  • Manual Object Groups: You can assign objects to a Manual Object Group by dragging and dropping objects on top of a Manual Object Group in the Objects palette. This gives you the option to add or remove objects from that group.
  • Rule Based Object Groups: You assign objects to a Rule Based Object Group by defining a rule stating which objects belong to that group. The rule could be for example: all Space objects where the Space Name property has the value ‘Office’. When the data in the model changes the selection captured by Rule Based Object Groups is automatically updated.
  • Group Hierarchies: You can create hierarchies of groups with parent and child groups. The parent groups collect all objects from their child groups, which allows you to maintain a clear overview of the logic behind your selections.
  • Generating Groups: You can easily generate groups based on property values by following the instructions here.
  • Non-overlapping Groups: You set a parent group to contain non-overlapping child groups. In this case when you add on object to one of the child groups, it is removed from any other child group under the same parent group. This is useful in for example classification systems for ensuring that each objects gets only one classification.
  • Ungrouped Objects: When you assign objects to a parent group you can add a special ‘Ungrouped Group’ child group to the parent group. This ungrouped group will automatically contain all the objects that the parent group has, but that none of its child groups has. This is useful when you need to make sure that all objects in a parent group are assigned to some child group.

Object Classes

Object Classes can be seen as permanent selections of objects. Simplebim has limited capabilities for converting objects from one Object Class to another, i.e. moving objects to another permanent selection. Support for this can be found in the Prototypes add-on.

Type Objects

Type objects are selections within one object class, i.e. a Type Object selection can only contain objects from the same Object Class. Type objects are Object Groups in Simplebim and thus all the possibilities of Object Groups are available for Type Objects.

Systems, Zones etc.

Systems, zones and other similar object groupings are all Object Groups in Simplebim and thus all the possibilities of Object Groups are available for systems, zones etc.

Classification Systems

Classification Systems define which selection of objects is classified in which way. Classification systems are Object Groups in Simplebim and thus all the possibilities of Object Groups are available for Classification systems.


You can use the Location Editor in Simplebim for creating selections of objects within a geometrically defined area. This can be used for creating selections for example for sections, apartments or building storeys.


The containment is a hierarchical selection of objects where each object can only occur once in the whole containment tree. The typical containment tree consists of project, sites, buildings, building storeys, assemblies, building elements and spaces. The containment tree can be manipulated in Simplebim using the Containment palette.