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 The AEC Lens
David Heller
David Heller
David Heller is the founder and President and CEO of IBSystems, Inc , MCADCafe's parent company. Always curious and on the look out for 'cool tech' he enjoys thinking outside the box and sharing his discoveries with you.

HP ZBook15 Mobile Workstation Review – Is Beauty More Than Skin Deep?

 
December 2nd, 2013 by David Heller

HP recently introduced its ZBook series of mobile workstations. After attending the product launch in NYC, I was fortunate enough to get a top of the line HP ZBook 15 mobile workstation to evaluate and discover if this sleek new beauty’s performance promise was more than skin deep.

My evaluation unit was über equipped with the highest performing NVIDIA GPU, included a built-in HP DreamColor Display system and came with the following specifications as supplied:

O/S:  Windows 7 Professional 64-bit Service Pack 1
CPU:  Intel® Core™ i7-4800MQ with Intel HD Graphics 4600 (2.7 GHz, 6 MB cache, 4 cores)
GPU:  NVIDIA Quadro K2100M (Designed specifically for mobile 15.6″ Platforms and the high end of offered GPUs)
Storage: Hard Drive – 500 GB (Includes 32GB Flash Cache and is Expandable to 1.87TB)
System Memory:  16GB  RAM – (Expandable to 32GB with 64bit O/S and Quad Core processor)
Display:  Full HD 15.6″ diagonal LED-back lit UWVA eDP anti-glare (1920 x 1080) screen with integrated HP DreamColor Display system providing more than a billion color possibilities.
Ports and Connectivity:  2 USB 3.0; 1 USB 2.0; 1 USB 3.0 charging port; 1 Thunderbolt1; 1 DisplayPort; 1 stereo microphone-in/headphone-out combo; 1 RJ-45 Ethernet; wireless;1 docking connector; 1 secondary battery connector; 1 VGA port; 1 SD compatible memory card reader
Other: Webcam with Cyberlink YouCAM control software installed;  Optical Storage with  Blu-ray read, DVD/CD read/write; fingerprint reader; Kensington lock port
Weight with batteries:  Starting at 6.2 lb (2.82 kg)
Warranty: Protected by HP Services, including a limited 3 years parts, 3 years labor, and 3 years on site service (3/3/3) standard warranty.

Read the rest of HP ZBook15 Mobile Workstation Review – Is Beauty More Than Skin Deep?

New HP Designjet eMultifunction Printer with Customer-driven Design Features

 
September 30th, 2013 by Sanjay Gangal

Article source: HP

HP Grows Designjet T-series Portfolio with New High-end eMultifunction Large-format Printer

HP today announced the HP Designjet T2500 eMultifunction Printer (eMFP), which brings new customer-driven design features to a single, compact device that scans, prints and copies to help highly mobile teams work together better and faster.

For architects, engineers, construction (AEC) and geographic information system (GIS) firms, as well as government agencies and enterprise customers, scanning large-format color documents is one of the most effective ways to review and communicate changes.  However, large-format scanning is a time-consuming and complex process. In addition, many scanners today are still separate devices from in-office, large-format printers.

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“Design as Preventative Medicine” Highlights Theme of Architects’ Video on Impact of Decade of Design on Public Health

 
September 25th, 2013 by Sanjay Gangal

Article source: AIA

Video To Be Played at CGI Annual Meeting Depicts Research Collaboration Between AIA and MIT’s Center for Advanced Urbanism

New York, N.Y. – September 25, 2013 – “Design as Long-Term, Preventative Medicine” is the theme behind a compelling new video that repositions the architectural profession as a primary catalyst for making America’s cities healthier places to live and work.

AIA Chief Executive Officer Robert Ivy, FAIA, aptly uses that phrase to describe the strategy architects must employ to make an impact on America’s public health crisis. The video will be played today at the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) Annual Meeting, where more than 1,000 global leaders are gathering to address CGI’s 2013 theme, “Mobilizing for Impact.”

You can see the Decade of Design: The AIA Global Urban Solutions Challenge video here:

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HP‘s Big Workstation Launch Wows ‘em In the Big Apple

 
September 12th, 2013 by David Heller

This year’s HP workstation product launch event was the biggest I’ve ever attended, and the most exciting in terms of the revolutionary new product offerings presented and the people I met and interviewed.

We gathered early on Wednesday morning in a large hall in the NYC Sheraton Hotel, right in the midst of bustling Times Square, and to get the ball rolling were treated to speeches by some heavy hitting HP workstation users.

The Appetizer

Mark Russell – Director, Producer, and Vfx Expert

First at bat was Mark Russell, and he hit it out of the park.  Mark is an independent Vfx creator and supervisor who headed up the special effect team during filming and now working post production on the upcoming Martin Scorsese film ‘The Wolf of Wall Street’ that’s destined to become a blockbuster when it hits the theaters later this year.

We were treated to some video outtakes from this production that showcased the VFx work that Mark produced for this film that was primarily shot and produced on Long Island and in Manhattan, just a quick subway ride to Brooklyn where Mark lives.

When you watch the film you won’t know where reality ends and CG takes over, it’s done that well.  One series of fly-over shots  were taken of a mansion in the Hamptons with multiple takes from a 4-bladed radio controlled miniature helicopter equipped with a super high-definition camera that transmitted the video wirelessly to an HP workstation on the ground for processing and viewing in real time.  The mini-copter stays in the air for less than a minute before running out of juice and the ground crew had to plop in new batteries fast to get this small bird back in the air before the ‘magic’ light evaporated.  The perfect lighting conditions occur close to sunset and the perfect light window lasts only around thirty minutes, so the film crew had to be super organized to shot this series in the allotted time, and keeping everyone and everything organized was a major part of Mark’s job.  Oh, and they did make a rendered CG Model of the mansion that you can’t tell from the real thing for shots that the mini-copter just couldn’t cope with.

Read the rest of HP‘s Big Workstation Launch Wows ‘em In the Big Apple

Interview with Justin Lokitz about Autodesk InfraWorks 360 Pro

 
August 22nd, 2013 by Sanjay Gangal

I had the privilege of interviewing Justin Lokitz at our studio at our Campbell headquarters in the heart of the Silicon Valley. Justin is Senior Product Manager for Infrastructure & Collaboration Products at Autodesk. He is extremely knowledgeable and passionate about the new release. He talks about the history and evolution of InfraWorks 360 Pro as well as gives some fascinating applications of this product to make decision making easier for city planners. He also talks about how companies bidding on infrastructure projects gain a competitive benefit by using InfraWorks 360 Pro.

Dell offering the world’s thinnest and lightest mobile workstation and highest resolution UltraSharp Monitor

 
July 25th, 2013 by Sanjay Gangal

Article source: Dell

Dell has announced a new workstation and a 32 inch monitor. Here is some information from Dell about the workstation and the monitor:

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Fiatech and ICC Take Aim at Code Compliance in Digital Age

 
May 16th, 2013 by Sanjay Gangal

Article source: Fiatech

Using computer technology for plan review, the plan approval process, and code checking streamlines building department operations and can be a boon for local economies. Fiatech and the International Code Council (ICC) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding that supports a shared vision to advance the effectiveness and efficiency of building design, construction, and code compliance through the use of advanced technologies and practices represented by the Fiatech AutoCodes Project. AutoCodes—automated code checking—is a significant development that moves regulatory compliance into the digital age on par with modern commercial design and construction industry practices.

“Fiatech is pleased to have ICC’s support in the development of AutoCodes, which will be a ‘game changer’ in the building design and construction process,” said Ray Topping, Director of Fiatech. “Our Memorandum of Understanding builds on the strong working relationship established with ICC over the past six years in advancing regulatory streamlining.”

“Automated code checking helps plan reviewers focus on the core tasks of code compliance and speeds up the permitting process,” said ICC Board President Ronald Piester, AIA. “This innovative technology will provide comprehensive and consistent results from project to project across jurisdictions and allow code officials to dedicate more time to safety issues, inspections, and other important duties.”

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The New Rules of Innovation – Carl Bass at TEDxBerkeley

 
April 18th, 2013 by Sanjay Gangal

Carl Bass is president and chief executive officer of Autodesk, Inc.  Autodesk is the leader in 3D design, engineering and entertainment software. Formerly he was Autodesk’s chief operating officer, responsible for worldwide sales, marketing, and product development.

Carl Bass talks about the new rules of innovation… at TEDxBerkeley. Innovation is happening at an unprecedented pace and will continue to accelerate because of 5 trends:

    1. The Age of Access and Experience
    2. Business Un-usual
    3. Digital Fabrication
    4. Rise of Information
    5. Infinte Computing

Invitation for a video interview at the AIA Expo 2013 in Denver

 
April 11th, 2013 by Sanjay Gangal

AECCafe.Com  is exhibiting at the AIA Expo 2013 in booth #264 on June 20th and 21st. We are recording video interviews at the conference for exhibitors and architects attending the expo. Each interview is typically 3 – 7 minute long. For the exhibitors, we typically ask the following questions and a few follow up questions:

  • Tell us about your company?
  • What are you showing at your booth?
  • Do you want to share any new announcements with the AECCafe audience?
  • How can AECCafe visitors find out more about your company?
The questions can be customized for each company. We record the interviews in front of a green screen and then replace the background with the exhibitor booth picture or some other suitable backdrop. The architects are asked about their company, their recent projects, and about their design philosophy.

The interview is free for AECCafe Member Companies but we charge a nominal amount to other companies and architects to cover our expenses. Contact Sanjay Gangal if you are interested in booking a 15-minute time slot for the interview. You can see past interviews here.

To add a little fun to the conference, we are asking the conference attendees to share a joke in front of the video camera. The best jokes will be edited together in a video montage. The jokes have to be clean and funny.

Here is one of the interviews we recorded last year which has received more than 2,500 views:

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A GIS Laboratory, Indeed

 
February 28th, 2013 by Don Talend

Arizona State’s GIS master’s program thrusts students onto the leading edge of the field—and geospatial technologies

A good place to get a sense of where the geographic information system (GIS) field is headed is Lattie F. Coor Hall at Arizona State University in Tempe, Ariz. That’s the home of the 30-credit-hour Masters of Advanced Study in GIS (MAS-GIS) Program within ASU’s School of Geographical Sciences and Urban Planning. Here, students are exposed to not only the latest GIS concepts but also ever-evolving technologies.

ASU’s School of Geographical Sciences and Urban Planning offers additional options for GIS studies, including an undergraduate certificate and an undergraduate degree program that is in development. Like all master’s programs, though, the MAS-GIS is designed to convey the most advanced concepts in its field.

The program was developed from 2002–2003 and launched in 2004 by Dr. Robert C. Balling, Jr., who had overseen ASU’s Office of Climatology for 18 years. Balling—the associate program director—and several faculty associates—including Nik Smilovsky, MS, GISP, product specialist for Topcon Positioning Systems dealer RDO Integrated Controls in Phoenix—part of RDO Equipment Co.—teach a total of 10 courses in the program, which also includes an internship and capstone GIS project in the final semester. Typically, students start in the fall semester and complete their studies in 12 months.

Dr. Robert C. Balling, Jr., associate director of the Masters of Advanced Study in GIS (MAS-GIS) Program at Arizona State University, developed the curriculum for a program that has provided advanced training for more than 250 students since 2004.

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