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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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Immersive Technology from Vectorworks

Thursday, July 13th, 2017

Vectorworks Architect is a leading architectural design and BIM software that helps connect the entire design process from concept to construction in one platform, according to company materials. The product is well positioned to embody future augmented reality and virtual reality which are rapidly becoming important features in presentation software for design companies.

Vectorworks Architect empowers you to design without constraints. With a broader array of drafting and annotation tools than other BIM applications, you will produce stunning presentations and the highest quality documentation while you design.

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Using SEPS2BIM for Facilities Management in Healthcare Projects

Wednesday, May 31st, 2017

Kimon Onuma has been hosting webinars on various aspects of SEPS2BIM, the Space and Equipment Planning System (SEPS) is a standalone Government off the Shelf (GOTS) web based application and database. The recent webinar focused on how architects could tap into owners’ data, and gather more information from them for the BIM process.

SEPS2BIM authors baseline Programs for Design (PFD) and Project Room Contents (PRC) for Department of Veterans Affairs and Department of Defense Health Agency healthcare projects.

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Users Speak out on Low Cost Conceptual Design Options

Thursday, May 25th, 2017

AECCafe Voice asked some users and vendors about their low cost conceptual design software to see what features are the most valuable to users in the workplace.

GRAPHISOFT ARCHICAD

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Invicara Releases BIM Assure 1.2: Intelligent Rules for the BIM Model

Thursday, April 27th, 2017

Marty Chobot, vice president of Marketing for Invicara spoke with AECCafe Voice about the latest BIM Assure 1.2 release.

Configurable report templates let users export model data to Excel for review or further analysis. Data slices and related element data reports help users get the right data for the right elements in a very familiar and easy-to-use format.

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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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CloudCities Adds Procedural Terrains for AEC Professionals

Thursday, March 30th, 2017

CloudCities announced an update to their cloud platform for building insights that adds procedural terrains and advanced search features. CloudCities for AEC professionals and their clients highly simplifies the process of creating 3D plans and combining them with data. The new version makes it possible to immerse the models in beautiful terrains that load quickly and are generated procedurally. The new CloudCities is now available at cloudcities.io.

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Presenting 2030 Districts: Urban Sustainability Through Collaboration

Tuesday, March 7th, 2017

Dave Low, Network Liaison for the private-sector led 2030 Districts, spoke about the recent development of that group’s establishment of a non-profit separate from Architecture 2030, an organization that provides support for the goal of reaching carbon-neutrality in buildings by the year 2030.

After five years of support and oversight from Architecture 2030, the fifteen 2030 Districts across North America have established their own non-profit.

As part of this move, the 2030 Districts have selected the following thirteen members to its initial Board of Governors:

Name Organization Name Organization
Tyler Harris General Services Administration (GSA) Anna Siefken Carnegie Mellon University
Jason Kobeda Major League Baseball Jiri Skopek Jones Lang LaSalle
Edward Mazria Architecture 2030 Tim Thiel Covestro, LLC
Sara Neff Kilroy Realty Jon Utech The Cleveland Clinic
Brett Phillips Unico Properties Jenita Warner Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District
Dave Pogue CBRE Jill Ziegler Forest City Realty Trust
Megan Saunders Stamford 2030 District

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Knowing What’s Underground with BIM and GIS

Tuesday, February 21st, 2017

“Disruptive technology changes the face of industries, but we are also in an age of disruptive data.” – Anne Kemp

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