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I have a .x3d file containing several meshes. When I load them into Blender, they are loaded into separate objects; I'd like all of them to be loaded into one group so I can manipulate them (e.g., rotate them) together.

To emphasize, I know how to group objects once they are loaded, however there are a lot of them, so being able to load them directly to a group would be more convenient. Is there a way to do it?

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  • $\begingroup$ it could be added easily as a feature to the addon. A completely reasonable request btw. $\endgroup$
    – zeffii
    May 6, 2015 at 11:43
  • $\begingroup$ the .x3d standard does specify an element tag called <Group> which goes directly inside a scene. but the blender .x3d importer doesn't handle it explicitly, at least I don't see it in the code. You could file a bug report to acknowledge it. $\endgroup$
    – zeffii
    May 6, 2015 at 12:18

1 Answer 1

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While the .x3d specifies a Group tag, as of (May 2015) it doesn't appear that the blender .x3d importer does anything special with the tag It might not be possible to avoid a bit of scripting..

The .x3d importer currently prepends the name 'Shape' to all objects it generates. A simple way to select all objects with that prefix is

import bpy

D = bpy.data
for obj in D.objects:
    if obj.name.startswith("ShapeCylinder"):
        obj.select = True

or also generate the Empty and parent them all in one go.

import bpy

objects = bpy.data.objects

# makes the Empty, adds to scene
MT = objects.new('Empty_Grouper', None)
bpy.context.scene.objects.link(MT)

# parent every new object to MT
for obj in objects:
    if obj.name.startswith("ShapeCylinder"):
        obj.parent = MT

These scripts can be executed from inside Blender's Text Editor. An alternative is to write a thin wrapper around the .x3d importer, something like:

wrapped_importer_x3d.py

In essence what the code below does is:

  • it loads the existing x3d importer code.
  • Before triggering it, it stores the list of existing object names
  • after the import is complete it figures out the names of the objects that have been added
  • then parents those to an Empty.

You could save this, and stick it into /scripts/addons/wrapped_importer_x3d.py, enable it so:

enter image description here

Then it will be located in Import -> Import x3d parented

# ##### BEGIN GPL LICENSE BLOCK #####
#
#  This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or
#  modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License
#  as published by the Free Software Foundation; either version 2
#  of the License, or (at your option) any later version.
#
#  This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful,
#  but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of
#  MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE.  See the
#  GNU General Public License for more details.
#
#  You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License
#  along with this program; if not, write to the Free Software Foundation,
#  Inc., 51 Franklin Street, Fifth Floor, Boston, MA 02110-1301, USA.
#
# ##### END GPL LICENSE BLOCK #####

# <pep8-80 compliant>

bl_info = {
    "name": "x3d wrapped importer Parents",
    "author": "alias",
    "version": (0, 0, 1),
    "blender": (2, 7, 4),
    "category": "Import-Export",
    "wiki_url": "",
    "tracker_url": ""
}

import bpy
from bpy.types import Operator
from bpy.props import (
    BoolProperty,
    EnumProperty,
    FloatProperty,
    StringProperty)

from bpy_extras.io_utils import (
    ImportHelper,
    orientation_helper_factory,
    axis_conversion,
    path_reference_mode)

from io_scene_x3d import import_x3d


IOX3DOrientationHelper = orientation_helper_factory(
    "IOX3DOrientationHelper",
    axis_forward='Z',
    axis_up='Y')


class ImportX3DBETA(Operator, ImportHelper, IOX3DOrientationHelper):
    """Import an X3D or VRML2 file"""
    bl_idname = "import_scene.x3d_grouped"
    bl_label = "Import X3D/VRML2 Grouped"
    bl_options = {'PRESET', 'UNDO'}

    filename_ext = ".x3d"
    filter_glob = StringProperty(default="*.x3d;*.wrl", options={'HIDDEN'})

    def parent_new_objects(self, object_names):
        objects = bpy.data.objects
        MT = objects.new('Empty_Grouper', None)
        bpy.context.scene.objects.link(MT)

        # for every object in the scene which matches the start of the string
        # parent it to MT
        for obj in (o for o in objects if o.name in object_names):
            obj.parent = MT

    def execute(self, context):

        keywords = self.as_keywords(ignore=("axis_forward",
                                            "axis_up",
                                            "filter_glob",
                                            ))
        global_matrix = axis_conversion(from_forward=self.axis_forward,
                                        from_up=self.axis_up,
                                        ).to_4x4()
        keywords["global_matrix"] = global_matrix

        before = {obj.name for obj in bpy.data.objects}

        response = import_x3d.load(self, context, **keywords)
        if response == {'FINISHED'}:
            after = {obj.name for obj in bpy.data.objects}
            new_names = after ^ before
            self.parent_new_objects(new_names)

        return {'FINISHED'}


# Only needed if you want to add into a dynamic menu
def menu_func_import(self, context):
    self.layout.operator(ImportX3DBETA.bl_idname, text="Import x3d parented")


def register():
    bpy.utils.register_class(ImportX3DBETA)
    bpy.types.INFO_MT_file_import.append(menu_func_import)


def unregister():
    bpy.types.INFO_MT_file_import.remove(menu_func_import)
    bpy.utils.unregister_class(ImportX3DBETA)


if __name__ == "__main__":
    register()

    # test call
    # bpy.ops.import_scene.x3d_grouped('INVOKE_DEFAULT')
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  • $\begingroup$ Thanks, but I think my question was a little unclear, please see the bold text in the revised question. $\endgroup$
    – olamundo
    May 6, 2015 at 11:20

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