Skip to content

Structure Management

A structure is a geometric object visualized in Polyscope, like a mesh or a point cloud. The first step in seeing your data in Polyscope is to register one or more structures to add them to the visualization. Then, quantities can be added to these structures, like scalar functions, colors, or vector fields.

Each structure should be given a name which is unique among structures of that type. You can then use this name as a handle to perform operations on the structure; For instance, you can register a mesh with:

ps.register_surface_mesh("my mesh", vertices, faces)
Then, in a distant part of your code, add a scalar function to it with:
ps.get_surface_mesh("my mesh").add_scalar_quantity("some values", values)
This avoids the need to pass a reference to the structure you created around your entire codebase. Alternately, one can directly use the handle returned by register_surface_mesh(), instead of keying on a name string.

The following structures available in Polyscope. Many more structures are in development!

Registering structures

Each structure offers a register___(name, ...) function (like register_point_cloud()) which accepts the name of the structure and the data necessary to construct it. These functions will return a structure object which may be used to add quantities to the structure. See the relevant sections for documentation on each of these register functions.

Accessing structures

Polyscope offers two patterns for calling methods on a registered structure: you can either use the handle returned after structure creation, or refer to the structure by name.

import polyscope as ps

# register a structure
ps_mesh = ps.register_surface_mesh("my mesh", vertices, faces)

# access with the handle
ps_mesh.add_scalar_quantity("some values", values)

# access by name
ps.get_surface_mesh("my mesh").add_scalar_quantity("some values", values)
The former is concise and programmatic, while the latter avoids the need to keep track of a variable.

As before, each structure offers a get___(name) method, like get_surface_mesh(name) which can be used to get a handle to the structure of that type by name.

Removing structures

If no longer needed, structures can be removed by name or by handle. Removing a structure frees memory for the underlying objects, invalidating all references to the structure and its quantities.

import polyscope as ps

# register a structure and some data
ps_mesh = ps.register_surface_mesh("my mesh", vertices, faces)
ps_mesh.add_scalar_quantity("some values", values)

# look at it
ps.show()
# (user exits ui)


# remove the structure
# (these two forms are equivalent, choose one) 
ps_mesh.remove()
ps.remove_surface_mesh("my_mesh")


# actually, just remove everything
ps.remove_all_structures()