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Bentley’s Be Inspired Awards Finalists Offer Real-World Solutions and Fantasy Flight in the BIM Advancements in Construction Category

Sunday, October 8th, 2017

Each year Bentley Systems holds its thought-leadership event known as The Year in Infrastructure Conference, and this year, for the first time, it will be held in Asia at the Marina Bay Sands in Singapore. The event highlights the company’s prestigious Be Inspired Awards, where finalists in 17 categories present their most innovative projects of the past year, and describe how, using Bentley applications, they were able to solve real-world challenges. The winners will be announced at a special ceremony and gala on Oct. 12.

JMC2 Heaven Sent, Simi Valley, California

While I’m looking forward to hearing about all the finalists in all categories, here we will look at the Be Inspired Awards finalists in the BIM Advancements in Construction category.

JMC2 – Heaven Sent – Simi Valley, California, United States

What does a daredevil skydiver have to do with Bentley software and construction?

Luke Aikins leapt from a plane at 25,000 feet without a parachute or wingsuit, and reached terminal velocity of 120 miles per hour before dropping safely into a 10,000-square-foot net outside Simi Valley, California, setting a Guinness World Record. Sponsored by Stride gum, this USD 8 million stunt, dubbed “Heaven Sent,” tested the mettle of Bentley software for JMC2 Civil Engineering + Surveying who conceptualized the fall, designed the lifesaving “trap,” and oversaw construction.
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HP Z Workstations Address Security Challenges of Today’s World

Thursday, September 21st, 2017

Xavier Garcia, vice president and general manager, global head Workstations, HP Inc. and Josh Peterson, vice president product management, Workstations, HP Inc. recently presented a webinar on the new HP Desktop Z workstation family.

HP Z8 Workstation with dual HP Z27x Displays (2)

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AEC Collection Extends Autodesk’s Cloud Subscription Value and Addresses Infrastructure

Thursday, September 7th, 2017

Autodesk announced their expansion of the Architecture, Engineering and Construction Collection (AEC Collection) that includes support for design through pre-construction. The new tools will extend the product with no additional cost to those who already have a cloud-based subscription with the company. The expanded tools are included in the subscription rate of the AEC Collection. The emphasis on Civil 3D allows users to access InfraWorks and Revit for infrastructure and pre-construction. Products in the Collection include Revit, AutoCAD, AutoCAD Civil 3D, Navisworks Manage and 3ds Max.

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Free Mobile Apps to Turn Your Smartphone into a 3D Scanner

Thursday, August 10th, 2017

A popular technology that has mushroomed in the past couple of years has been the ability to use your smartphone or tablet as a 3D scanner. Easy to use apps let you capture, share 3D scans and apply 3D models easily.

itSeez3D’s app lets you capture, share and apply 3D models on your mobile device powered with Structure Sensor or Intel RealSense 3D camera.

Victor Erukhimov, CEO and co-founder of itSeez3D, said that the Occipital Structure Sensor for IPad has changed the landscape of information gathering by way of 3D scanning.

Jeff Powers co-founder, Occipital, said the Structure Sensor is designed to gather tons of information from the world around us and the itSeez3D scanner puts that information back together to create incredibly beautiful 3D models.

“Our goal was to create a 3D scanner that could create models so realistic that you can’t tell the difference between the visual object and the rendered computer model,” said Powers.  “To scan a tabletop object, you scan around it with your mobile device. After your scan data is captured and synthesized in the cloud, you can visualize it on the iPad, or export it as a 3D model. Structure Sensor measures to hundreds of thousands of points by admitting a spectrum of infrared light. itSeez3D scanner takes that data to reconstruct a point cloud of the object. Then it creates a mesh wireframe and applies a texture layer mimicking the surface of the original object. It will also isolate the object from the background as you circle around it.”

The calculations necessary to do this are quite complex for an iPad so the software downloads quickly in the cloud, so you simply download the 3D model in a number of formats. itSeez3D software has incredible texture. Color 3D prints come out beautifully as well.

Face scanning and soon entire room scanning will be available. This app can be downloaded from the App Store.

With the Scandy iPad App with an attached Structure Sensor, you can scan an object or person in 3D. The Structure Sensor talked about for the itSeez3D scanner can use the iPad camera to overlay image data, and picks up depth data. With this combined information, they can create a 3D scan. The Scandy App is designed for the 3D scan to then be used for 3D printing. You can upload an existing 3D scan to Scandy.co that was created in another program. This app can be downloaded from the App Store and is also available for Android devices.

Trnio is another free iPhone or iPad, or Android app that allows you to do mobile scanning. Users must make sure they do their scan in bright, even lighting and keep an equal distance from the object as they position themselves around it. It is suggested that you get different angles so you get a more complete scan. The tutorial is extensive and gives you advice on what types of objects to avoid, such as thin or stringy objects, plain objects, transparent items like glasses or ones that move around. Face scanning is also possible with this app. Two types of guided scanning are available, accessible through the center camera button. The first, object mode, guides a user around an object if the user is moving in a circular pattern around the object. Scene mode allows for free scanning outdoors and for scanning larger items. There are several options for error handling, processing and trimming your scans. This app can be downloaded from the App Store.

Australian company Scann3D provides something a little different from the previous offerings:  the Matterport Pro Camera to transform 2D media into interactive and immersive 3D content. The camera is popular for planners, floor plan providers, real estate agents and others working with interiors and exterior landscapes.

Matterport Pro collects accurate visual and spatial data to map entire commercial, construction, and functional spaces. From this collection professionals can produce immersive 3D content easily. All of the images captured are processed, hosted and organized in the Matterport Cloud, so you know where they are and can access them easily. No photo editing skills are required because the panoramas are automatically processed and optimized for color balance. Measurements can be collected using the Matterport Workshop. Accurate dimensions are within 99%. It has been used a great deal in real estate but its value to construction and design are intriguing.

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AECCafe SIGGRAPH Sweepstakes Winner, Duncan Chen, senior principal Technology R&D at CoreLogic has been a vital leader and influence on FNC’s overall technology strategy and system development since joining the company in 1997. Chen works to define and bring to development innovative technology solutions for FNC’s clients. Chen designed and architected the AIXML concept and led production of FNC’s flagship products CMS® and AppraisalPort®, which have become one of the largest platforms for both retail and wholesale loan organization. Chen also developed the high performance Rule Engine, which serves FNC patterned GAAR (General Accepted Appraisal Rules), an automatic appraisal risk assessment tool.

Chen is currently leading the strategic plan to bring FNC’s technology to the Brazilian market. He also actively serves the mortgage technology industry through his work with GSE and MISMO standard committees. He is a noted guest-speaker for numerous internal and international conferences.

Congratulations, Duncan!

 

 

 

 

 

HP Announces New HP Z VR Backpack and Mars Home Planet for Virtual Reality

Thursday, August 3rd, 2017

In a webinar prior to announcement this Tuesday, HP executives talked about the exciting new approach and commercial solutions for virtual reality (VR). As part of this strategy, the company has unveiled what appears to be the first professional wearable VR PC – the new HP Z VR Backpack. Crafted to bring the full potential of VR to-life, it is designed to be a secure and manageable wearable VR PC.

HP Z VR Backpack used for training purposes.

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Trimble’s SiteVision for Outdoor AR Coming Soon

Thursday, June 15th, 2017

Aviad Almagor, director, Mixed Reality Program, from Trimble spoke recently about one of their prototype products, SiteVision, used for accurate outdoor augmented reality using GNSS, that is currently only available for pilot customers.

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GeoSLAM Announces ZEB-REVO “Walk and Scan” Mobile Mapping System Upgrade for Indoor Mapping

Wednesday, June 7th, 2017

Mark Reid, Vice President of Product Management at GeoSLAM Ltd talked about their recent announcement of the real-time upgrade option for the ZEB-REVO, their handheld mobile mapping system. Demonstrated for the first time at SPAR 3D 2017 in Houston, the optional upgrade includes a revised datalogger capable of undertaking SLAM registration in real-time. It has its own integrated Wi-Fi, with results that can be displayed live, as they are captured, on any web browser enabled device including tablets and smartphones.

Thornton Abbey Scan

AECCafe Voice: What are some indoor map applications for ZEB-REVO?

The ZEB-REVO handheld mobile mapping device employs a highly robust 3D Simultaneous Localisation And Mapping (SLAM) algorithm, which enables the rapid creation of a 3-dimensional model of any space.

Since it does not require a GPS signal, the ZEB-REVO is at its best in complex, enclosed, multi-level environments, without compromising on the accuracy of data collection.

User cam

ZEB-REVOs are regularly used by surveyors and non-experts alike in the construction and development sector, whether for the recording of heritage buildings in need of restoration, generating footprints of vast structures, real estate valuations or scan-to-BIM.

As the ZEB-REVO is non-invasive and easy to use (requiring minimal training for non-expert users), the device has also been lauded as an ideal scanning product for both dangerous and sensitive environments. This includes time-limited projects, such as in a precarious building prior to renovation or demolition, or occupied environments, such as colleges, nursing homes and hospitals.

Large building scan – Courtesy Geomeasure

AECCafe Voice: Can you describe your ‘modular approach?’

Structures with unusual layouts or complex networks are not a problem for the ZEB-REVO, thanks to both the modular and compact nature of the product. Unlike heavy single-function trolley-based SLAM systems, the lightweight, handheld device is ideal for adapting to difficult-to-access environments, whether that is down a narrow shaft while attached to a pulley system, or using a birds eye perspective when secured to a drone.

The ZEB-REVO can also be mounted to cars, boats, UAVs and other small-scale piloted and autonomous vehicles; making it ideal for surveying challenging indoor and outdoor multi-level environments. ZEB-CAM, which also is a modular add-on, can be quickly attached or detached depending upon the application and deployment method being used. This allows for an easy upgrade path that futureproofs the ZEB-REVO against the latest developments.
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3D Reality Mesh Models Become Smarter with Bentley’s New Reality Modeling Technology

Thursday, April 20th, 2017

Recent advancements in reality modeling have made the technology, which was once limited to highly skilled, well-trained individuals and costly equipment, now accessible to everyone. Faraz Ravi, a Bentley fellow and project manager for reality modeling spoke with AECCafe Voice about Bentley’s new innovations in reality modeling technology which greatly simplify the process of capturing, processing, and using data to create engineering-ready 3D models.

A 3D engineering-ready reality mesh created in ContextCapture comparing (left to right) photogrammetry, LiDAR, and a hybrid input. (Image courtesy of Bentley Systems and City of Strasbourg)

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Dell All-in-One Desktop Computer Offers Touch Screen and 10 Speakers

Thursday, April 13th, 2017

The “new in January” Dell All-in-One desktop computer XPS 27 Windows 10 PC which sports a 27” screen with touch screen is one of the popular “All-in-One” computers that are offered by various hardware vendors today. Because of the computer’s ten speakers and great sound system, it may be extremely popular with those who want to hold a concert in their home.

Dell All-in-One XPS 27 Desktop Computer

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TurboCAD Pro Platinum 2017 with Surface and Solid Modeling Available

Thursday, April 6th, 2017

IMSI® Design announced the release of TurboCAD Pro Platinum 2017 recently, the company’s premium 2D drafting and 3D Surface and Solid modeling application for Windows desktop PCs. Dave Taylor of TurboCAD, demoed the product and some of its notable features, which actually number close to 50.

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