Should I be teaching Legacy Tools or LBT V1?

Our team has been using Grasshopper and the Ladybug Tools to enhance our engineering consulting work, and we have been receiving very positive feedback from other teams in the business, who would now like me to teach them the software and methods.

Should I be teaching them the Legacy Tools or the new Ladybug Tools release V1?

Incorporating new software into a business and using it on live projects is risky; I’d like to get it right from the outset and take the path of least resistance longterm.

Here are what I perceive to be the arguments in favour of each version - please correct me if I’m wrong about any of these:

Legacy advantages:

  • Currently more support because more people are using it.
  • Currently dwarfs V1 in terms of forum entries and video tutorials.
  • I am still having trouble converting my definitions from legacy workflows to V1 (e.g. for daylighting) - it seems risky to roll out the new tools across the business if even I as an advanced user am not on top of these issues yet.
  • V1 is missing THERM/Ironbug/Ladybug renewables/Envi-Met integration - how long before we can expect these to get implemented?

V1 advantages:

  • Support in the future will be better because more people will be using it.
  • Learners will not have to relearn new tools when we do switch soonish (which seems inevitable).
  • Supports many new features, quicker computation and better practices.
  • Will be required for the Pollination Cloud once it comes online? When can we expect this to happen?

@chris & @mostapha:

  • We are considering to become an industry partner to access the video tutorials on the site, but these appear to be only for the Legacy tools? Will others be added for using the V1 tools?
  • If we do go with V1, should I be getting everyone to install the Legacy tools alongside, just in case? This adds another hurdle since the installation process is more complex. We are considering getting the one-click install option, but will this work if we also want the Legacy tools to work alongside the new ones?

Any insights on any of this will be very much appreciated!

P.S.: BIG thank you to everyone involved in developing the tools - you rock! :metal:

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Hi @MaxMarschall,

This is a tricky one! We had this discussion a couple of times with other instructors and it’s hard to have one answer for everything for the reasons that you mentioned above. Can you start with a mixed approach? We intentionally designed the process in a way that both versions can be installed together and they should both be functional. This should help for a smooth transition between the two.

I think the logic behind the legacy plugins and the LBT ones are very similar. That means if you know the legacy plugin it is not that hard to find your way to use the LBT plugins.

@JankiVyas is helping us with this topic but it will take some time before we have a full series of tutorials.

I replied to this one separately under the link that you shared.

Some will be available soon like Irobug integration. @MingboPeng, has already done some work on this. @AntonelloDiNunzio can comment on the EnviMet integration. he renewables will take some time to be translated - the same can be said about THERM unless we get a contract or a project to change the schedule.

It’s already out and functional! Technically I should not share this video publicly and wait for the updated version that we will record soon but life is short! This is how it works! :slight_smile:


Thanks @mostapha, this is all very helpful (and exciting) news!

I think my strategy will be to teach V1 but for now to get the other teams to only use it for specific energy modelling scenarios. For these I will provide them with templates/training/coaching. In time, as the online resources grow they can switch other workflows to LBT.

Can’t wait to use Pollination Cloud, it looks fantastic! This is a huge milestone, congrats!

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Wow!! life is short !


I just wanted to add that our priority is to get renewables integrated into EnergyPlus/OpenStudio simulations and these should effectively give access to everything that you could do with the Ladybug Renewables tab but with a larger feature set like modeling battery storage.

The only thing that has really been holding me back from re-implementing the THERM connection is that THERM is Windows-only and it’s not open source. So we realistically won’t be running THERM on Pollination even if the plugin supported it. Adding a THERM connection will also mean that I couldn’t say anymore that “the entire LBT plugin runs on Mac,” which I can currently say of LBT 1.x.

I’m teaching the lab for an introductory environmental principles course for architecture students this semester. I decided to use Ladybug Tools in my demos because about two-thirds of my students are using Macs and their assignments are not especially complex. I only just ran up against the feature limitations of LBT last week while doing the section on daylighting analysis.

Hi @coditect, I imagine it is because of the recipes. Which ones do you need that are missing?

Hi @mostapha,
For the same purposes i need the illuminance/luminance recipes, and less critical the image based simulations.

sDA, ASE, and point-in-time illuminance for testing compliance with LEED v4 requirements.

Thank you both. @devang has started adding the core commands that we need for developing the point-in-time recipes. They should be available in the next couple of weeks.

As for sDA and ASE - ASE is pretty straight forward and we can add it. sDA based on LEED v4 requirement with dynamic blinds can be pretty tricky. The only way to correctly model the shades is to use 5-Phase (or 3-Phase for blinds + separate ASE) which is needs a lot of extra computation and I don’t know how much it will help to design a better building from daylight point of view.

Honestly, I can go even further and say that I don’t think LEED compliance is a good teaching methodology. These metrics doesn’t correspond to a well-daylit space. The same people on the board who came up with the metric have published studies on how the metric is challenging and doesn’t result in well daylit spaces - a daylight uniformity check and metrics like UDI can be a much better indicator for well-daylit spaces IMO.

All being said, we had discussions to provide the recipe at least on Pollination where we have more control on the process and also compute resources will not be a limiting factor.

Thanks @mostapha,
Agree with what you said (LEED compliance teaching). On my side i just want to expose different methodologies to approach daylight (or any other performance) approach.
Looking forward for the @devang’s updates.

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Is there any news about this?I am doing an urban scale interior daylighting analysis for initial design phases with sDA and ASE and I don’t know how much the introduction of blinds would contribute to the lighting performance analysis.