El Tornado

Cross Platform Collaboration for Data Streaming with Speckle


To understand how data streaming can work across different interfaces using Speckle. Taking these tools, then set up a project that streams  data between different senders and receivers.


Taking inspiration from our thesis projects, this project merges a site with a complex geometry. It explores how data is streamed to evolve and progress the design through various users. While the site can be in one file, the geometry can be developed in another and then merged at the end.


The first stream Superblock Site was a Rhino file with simple building blocks. This file was then used to position the designed geometry and later streamed into Grasshopper.

The Grasshopper script is divided into three data streams. The first stream NewGeometryOnBlock, creates the base geometry and places the base geometry on the site. It streams a brep that the next receiver picks up.

The next stream Agent Based Design, focuses on creating curves around the base geometry through agent based design strategies. 

The final stream, FinalGeometry, uses cocoon to create the mesh geometry. 

Final Site And Geometry combines both the Rhino file and the Grasshopper file into one final ‘super stream’ that can be viewed online or in the Rhino viewer. 

Speckle Online:

Online, streams can be analysed and properties extracted through the different layers which is another interesting aspect of Speckle.

Overall, Speckle has a lot of potential to share data, but also some limitations when trying to stream more complex or heavy forms.

Limitations Experienced:

In the Agent Based Design stream,  initially the curves were not picked up by Speckle, throwing an error. To resolve the issue, various components were used to break and rebuild the curves. Eventually we were able to extract the curves and send them.

During the FinalGeometry, the limitations of Speckle were experienced.  The initial mesh streamed was too large for Speckle to handle, and thus it could not be seen online. After simplifying and reducing the number of mesh faces, we were able to stream the data.

Speckle Generated Workflow Diagram

El Tornado is a project of IAAC, Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia developed in the Master of Advanced Architecture 2019/20 by Students: Ankita Alessandra Bob, Fiona Demeur and Yigitalp Behram and Faculty: Paul Poinet