algorithmic modeling for Rhino



Octopus is a plug-in for applying evolutionary principles to parametric design and problem solving. It allows the search for many goals at once, producing a range of optimized trade-off solutions between the extremes of each goal.

Also see octopus.E for custom evolutionary algorithms.


Download the latest version on food4rhino

It is part of a range of tools developed at the University of Applied Arts Vienna, and Bollinger+Grohmann Engineers.


  • search for single goal + diversity of solutions
  • search for best trade offs between 2 to X goals
  • improve solutions by similarity-goals
  • choose preferred solutions during a search
  • change objectives during a search
  • solutions' 3d models for visual feedback
  • recorded history
  • save all search data within the Grasshopper document
  • save a solution as a Grasshopper State
  • export to text or text files

Octopus introduces multiple fitness values to the optimization. The best trade-offs between those objectives are searched, producing a set of possible optimum solutions that ideally reach from one extreme trade-off to the other.

Based on SPEA-2 and HypE from ETH Zürich and David Rutten's Galapagos User Interface. Developed by Robert Vierlinger in cooperation with Christoph Zimmel, and Bollinger+Grohmann Engineers.


To install:

  • Copy the .gha and .dll file into the Grasshopper components folder 
  • Right-click the file > Properties > make sure there is no "blocked" text
  • Restart Rhino and Grasshopper


Some examples are provided here

New commented examples and a brief manual are provided in the download of octopus on food4rhino.

Location: Vienna
Members: 449
Latest Activity: Jan 17

Discussion Forum

Using a complicated loop with Galapagos/Octopus

Hi!I have a pretty complex code that’s making an urban planning system to construct blocks and tiles.I made a loop with anemone as I can’t seem to make the Octopus loop work at all (it only does the…Continue

Started by Lev Zhi Nov 27, 2021.

Octopus window issue! 4 Replies

Hey all,I've been trying for hours to open the octopus window by clicking on it!(screenshot attached), the window isnt even minimized somewhere on the screen, i searched a lot.I removed it and copied…Continue

Started by fares. Last reply by Kleber Oliveira Nov 16, 2021.

Octopus Cube View

Hi I’m trying to see my multi optimization results in Octopus but when I run the octopus tool, I only see the results in CUBE VIEWS,…Continue

Started by Luciana Tenorio Sep 21, 2021.

Triangulate surface

Hello everyone!I don't know how to use grasshopper very well and I need help with something that I can't find a solution to. I'm trying to create the roof of the Grand Egyptian Museum in Cairo and I…Continue

Started by Nat Aug 2, 2021.

Comment Wall

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You need to be a member of Octopus to add comments!

Comment by Jesus Galvez on November 19, 2013 at 9:02


I downloaded version 3.1 and I can't get it to work. I have put files HelixToolkit.Wpf.dll and Octopus.gha in C:\Users\"username"\AppData\Roaming\McNeel\Rhinoceros\5.0\Plug-ins\Grasshopper {B45A29B1-4343-4035-989E-044E8580D9CF}\\Components\

Octopus appears in the ribbon, and the example files load correctly, but when I click start (calculation), it does nothing. 


Comment by Rob on October 27, 2013 at 12:02

Ok, solved that issue. The .gha and .dll were in: 

C:\Program Files (x86)\Grasshopper for Rhino 5\Components

but they need to be in:

C:\Users\Rob\AppData\Roaming\McNeel\Rhinoceros\5.0\Plug-ins\Grasshopper {A4.....CF}\\Components

Octopus is running perfectly now. What a cool plugin. Thanks!

Comment by Rob on October 27, 2013 at 11:00

I'm having trouble getting Octopus 3.0 or 3.1 to run in GH 0.9.0061. I believe I have it set up correctly, but double-clicking on the component seems to have no effect whatsoever. The file isn't blocked... Any thoughts anyone? Does Octopus run in 0.9.0061?


Comment by Luis García Lara on May 8, 2013 at 14:17

i restart rhino, and now it works, thanks!

Comment by Luis García Lara on May 8, 2013 at 14:14

Djordje, i did it, but i still have the same error...

Comment by djordje on May 8, 2013 at 14:03

If your Octopus file is already in appropriate folder (File -> Special Folders -> Components folder), then try unblock it (Right-click on it -> Properties > unblock it).
Will that help?

Comment by Luis García Lara on May 8, 2013 at 13:47

R5 & Gh 0.9.0014

Comment by djordje on May 8, 2013 at 13:45

Are you using Rhino4?
Octopus works only on Rhino5.

Comment by Luis García Lara on May 8, 2013 at 13:42

why i´m getting this error when i try to open some of the example file...
octopus component is in the grasshopper components folder, like the other plugins...

Comment by djordje on April 17, 2013 at 3:13

Hi Nick,
For now you will have to define the range within the slider. So yes, you are right.
Not sure I understood you about the second question. You will get the pareto frontier as a result of your octopus "analysis".


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