I misuse Blender as one possible editor for a 3D simulation program. The 3D simulation program also has other ways to create and modify geometries, among them are CSG operations. If there were a file format supporting CSG operations, then I could export to that format for visualization with Blender.

Blender 2.71 offers the following import formats

  • Collada (Default) (.dae)
  • Motion Capture (.bvh)
  • Scalable Vector Graphics (.svg)
  • Stanford (.ply)
  • Stl (.stl)
  • 3D Studio (.3ds)
  • Autodesk FBX (.fbx)
  • Wavefront (.obj)
  • X3D Extensible 3D (.x3d/.wrl)

I'm pretty sure that .dae, .ply, .3ds, .stl, and .obj don't support csg operations (because I have read sufficiently deep into their specifications to be sure). I think that .bvh and .fbx are motion capture formats, and that .svg is a 2D format.

My guess is that .x3d/.wrl doesn't support CSG operations either. I also guess that there simply aren't any portable non-proprietary file formats supporting CSG operations, independent of Blender and its supported input formats. Are my guesses and assumptions correct?

A more limited form of CSG are overlapping (solid) objects, where an order of the solids is specified and determines which object wins in case of overlaps. Does any of the above formats (or their implementation in Blender) supports this more limited form of CSG?


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