Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby honoluludesktop » Sat Aug 29, 2009 11:40 pm

Hi Mike, You are beginning to sound biased towards Google. That's OK, I am too most of the time, but it is also OK to lament the passing of "free" dxf import into Su. Guess I an one of those few poor Architects that don't have enough cash around to spend a few hundred dollars on anything if I don't have to:-(
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby pichuneke » Sat Aug 29, 2009 11:52 pm

I've heard that Blender is going to have dxf support soon. But its interface is very complex. I don't know programming, but an easy interface for blender like sketchup's one would be fantastic.

It's just a dream, but...
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby tomsdesk » Sun Aug 30, 2009 12:22 am

I was only saying: We're a rowdy demanding bunch, us design professionals, besides to a man being mostly poor (or cheap because we've been poor...a lot). One way to get more of us to buy pro is to cut such an important pro feature from the free version (seems to me I've been in agreement with a lot of you, so far anyway :`)

Then I was saying: We're a rowdy demanding bunch, us design professionals, besides to a man being mostly poor (or cheap). And we will still be poor (or cheap) even with this change in the free program. Sales will surely not meet typical corporate expectations (you can't think I'm too far out of the ballpark here, unless you have been asleep for the past twenty years :`)

Finally, I fully agree that Google bought SU to make a profit, and boy have they...but not to make a profit selling SU to a rowdy demanding bunch, us design professionals, to a man being mostly poor (or cheap) (surely, considering all the professional issues that were ignored from 5-6 or 6-7, you can at least see my point :`)

I hope I'm wrong...but I'm not going to hold my breath waiting for corporate magnanimity. (What I would do, if I had a pot money buried in the backyard, is prepare for the sale of pieces of a dismantled SU pro :`)
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby honoluludesktop » Sun Aug 30, 2009 12:26 am

Not knowledgeable of Bender, but Dxf I/O with a interface is something I have never seen. Most of the time a program will just read, or write a dxf file. Maybe Blender will have options to modify entities subject to your requirements. That would be good, not difficult. There will probably be a "default" I/O that is the way programs currently work. It also means that you can go from a dxf generated by any program into Bender, something no render software that I know of will do (not that I know of many).
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby CHARLIE__V » Sun Aug 30, 2009 2:43 am

Well, ya can never know for sure but I see the silver lining here.

How many were upset when @Last sold to Google?

Then GS free was released, many a grumble from the @Last paying crowd. [IE:woaaa... limited/no funds for development....SU will die]

Now it seems GS is taking a serious turn to Develop.

Well, having been a Pro user for a number of years, what I have read sounds like the GS folks have gotten serious about their little piece of software.

Nothing wrong with that, in fact quite the opposite.....perhaps little ole SU will wow us all again!

Guess me glass is half full :~)
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby kmead » Sun Aug 30, 2009 4:07 am

Tempest in teapot. If the software is making you money, pay for it. If you pay for it you get the features you need to make money. Simple. We expect to be paid for the work we do, why is Google any different.

I am also hopeful about this development as it has been a while since I have seen that there is life at Google for SU.
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby kwistenbiebel » Sun Aug 30, 2009 5:05 am

For the first time in a long period I am POSITIVE about GSU development.
There are enough signs in the sky that Google is taking a turn with Sketchup and that they are doing some serious work on it for version 8.

The best thing is that Google is openly communicating about development now. (see the dev Blogspot)
That means they are proud enough of what they are doing.

I expect the Collada/DWG announcement (not the coolest announcement I admit) is the beginning of a longer series of open communication about v8 by google. :thumb:
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby HPW » Sun Aug 30, 2009 7:35 am

There are enough signs in the sky that Google is taking a turn with Sketchup and that they are doing some serious work on it for version 8.


My understanding of the blog post is that we will see a V7 update (Free to V7 User) soon with the removed DWG-Import (and a seperate install for it).

And in future V8 Major release this feature will be removed.
I do not see other announcments specially for V8.

So we will see what V7 brings other than the import-change.
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby dedmin » Sun Aug 30, 2009 7:56 am

Collada support is very positive - a lot of companies are improving their support - Blender, SolidWorks, Modo etc.
The real problem is Autodesk's monopoly and arrogance! If dwg is a standard - make it open standard! About Blender - this hype about the difficult interface is nonsense! Actualy it is very easy if YOU READ ABUT IT! There is coming a new version with a lot of improvement in the UI side ! Read this http://www.blender3darchitect.com/
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby kwistenbiebel » Sun Aug 30, 2009 10:42 am

dedmin wrote:Collada support is very positive - a lot of companies are improving their support - Blender, SolidWorks, Modo etc.
The real problem is Autodesk's monopoly and arrogance! If dwg is a standard - make it open standard! About Blender - this hype about the difficult interface is nonsense! Actualy it is very easy if YOU READ ABUT IT! There is coming a new version with a lot of improvement in the UI side ! Read this http://www.blender3darchitect.com/


I still think Blender should get a 'sketchup UI skin' :)
But Blender will never be able to level the default presentation power Sketchup has.
No one does instant model presentation better than Sketchup and that alone makes Sketchup a killer app, especially for design communication!
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby pichuneke » Sun Aug 30, 2009 11:16 am

kwistenbiebel wrote:
dedmin wrote:Collada support is very positive - a lot of companies are improving their support - Blender, SolidWorks, Modo etc.
The real problem is Autodesk's monopoly and arrogance! If dwg is a standard - make it open standard! About Blender - this hype about the difficult interface is nonsense! Actualy it is very easy if YOU READ ABUT IT! There is coming a new version with a lot of improvement in the UI side ! Read this http://www.blender3darchitect.com/


I still think Blender should get a 'sketchup UI skin' :)
But Blender will never be able to level the default presentation power Sketchup has.
No one does instant model presentation better than Sketchup and that alone makes Sketchup a killer app, especially for design communication!


I fully agree. I have used Blender a little, and its very powerful, but has a very difficult learning curve and it takes you a lot of work to start using it (at least me). In other words, its interface is non-intuitive. Perhaps in a month you can manage very well with it, but for a newbie... a newbie likes the interface of Sketchup.
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby dedmin » Sun Aug 30, 2009 11:56 am

Blender is not any difficult that any other 3D software in the same class. But with Collada you can import from SketchUP to texture and render - there are very good free renders for it. You ask to much - free, easy and powerful! No way...
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby pichuneke » Sun Aug 30, 2009 12:21 pm

dedmin wrote:Blender is not any difficult that any other 3D software in the same class. But with Collada you can import from SketchUP to texture and render - there are very good free renders for it. You ask to much - free, easy and powerful! No way...


You can find even OS free, easy and powerful, like Ubuntu Linux. Or tools like firefox, Openoffice... Anyway I don't know programming, I was telling an idea. And in fact I never use dwg/dfx for my desings, but I am giving my opinion as I see that, as a bad new. I have exported skp to blender without Collada before, so for me Sketchup free is getting "smaller".
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby drewpoeppel » Sun Aug 30, 2009 9:48 pm

I get the feeling some people think we Google Sketchup users should all shut up and be happy that Google has even blessed us with a free version of this product. And if you don't fork out the $500 for the pro version you shouldn't have any say in development. As far as I'm concerned they can do what they want with the PRO version of Sketchup. I don't use it and I'm doubtful if I ever will. I am disappointed that, in my mind they are downgrading a part of the free product that I use. Google Sketchup. Google are the ones who decided to make this free version. I like it and want to continue using it they way I'm used to. This change makes that harder. A lot of their other products are free too and if they started ripping out stuff I like in gmail or google earth or whatever, I'd also be upset. I want the features I'm used to and made me choose this program over the others. If they and others don't value the opinion of users like me then fine. I'll move on.
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby Mike Lucey » Sun Aug 30, 2009 10:53 pm

Guys,

From what I read the only reason some users do not opt for the Pro Version is because of the price. I still don't think the price is any way high but maybe it could be to users that do not operate in the Western World.

I have often thought that maybe a policy software companies could adopt might be to operate different pricing levels that would relate directly to average income levels in various countries around the World.

This idea may not be as daft as is sounds! Once the company has recouped the initial production costs they are in profit. They are limiting their profit levels by having one 'set price'. I think it should be quite possible to structure a sales system that would sell the software at reduced prices in countries that have lesser average income levels than the West.

A move along these lines would definitely eliminate a lot of piracy (big problem) also as I believe many genuine users would be more than willing to buy at a price within their means and be able to avail of backup. Online downloadable software is one commodity area in which this could work well. All it would need is a bit of foresight and planning.

When you think about it, it does not make much sense making something in ones own country and targeting the price at 'local' buyers then also expect buyers in countries with lesser means to pay the same price.

With regard to the $500 price tag on SU Pro, as I said I don't think its that high for most 'local' users. However Google could quite easily offer a 'payment plan' spread over 12 months, say $45 per month via CC and Google even have their own online payment system to make life easier. I don't think any user could seriously complain at paying $10 a week over a year, but again!

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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby kwistenbiebel » Mon Aug 31, 2009 1:19 am

To me the 500 dollars for the Pro version is very acceptable. Anyone that uses SU in a professional surrounding will agree.
Keeping the free version feature packed would be nice though. It is the free version that made sketchup so well known and widespread.
One of Google's best strategies ever if you ask me.
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby Khai » Mon Aug 31, 2009 2:00 am

I'm just questioning the choice of export option here...
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby wmanning » Mon Aug 31, 2009 3:11 am

There is good and bad news (with work-arounds). COLLADA is not a good format for exchanging a CAD file. It doesn't recognize layers, so everything will be on layer 0. It doesn't recognize groups, blocks, or components (I'm pretty sure). And everything becomes triangulated, so a lot of architectural files will need clean-up. But if all you are doing is bringing in a floorplan to kick off a project it isn't too bad (if you have an exporter from you CAD to COLLADA).

The good news is that you can run more than one version of SketchUp on the same PC or Mac. It doesn't force you to uninstall older versions, so you can keep 7 to open a .dwg, save the .skp, then open it in the new version. One extra step in the workflow to keep using a free product.

But it will be interesting to see what workflows people develop here.
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby d12dozr » Mon Aug 31, 2009 4:24 am

Khai wrote:I'm just questioning the choice of export option here...


I think they are going after the gaming, art, and film markets which seem to be gaining share on the original architecture market:
Sketchupdate wrote:As it turned out, folks wanted to use Google SketchUp models in all kinds of crazy ways. Things that we could never have imagined! We decided that Google SketchUp users should be able to export their models into some easy-to-read and fundamentally hackable file format to make this easier. Your models should be yours to do with as you see fit.


Here are some links if you care to see what other uses Sketchup is being used for:
http://sketchup.google.com/industries/digitalentertainment.html
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TlgtLXhwJSM
http://www.conceptart.org/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=153
http://www.go-2-school.com/blog_posts/view/7
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby linea » Mon Aug 31, 2009 6:43 am

I think they are going after the gaming, art, and film markets which seem to be gaining share on the original architecture market


At the moment at least, there are a lot more architects and 3d designers in the world than there are game and film designers. But anyway, if Google want more cool new friends like Massive Black, limiting the number of file formats in the free version will limit peoples' opportunities to demo the software thoroughly. I'm happy to be a pro user but I just hope that Google do have something really new for the pro version - not just dwg and dxf import and export.


Kwist said
still think Blender should get a 'sketchup UI skin

If we keep saying it, one day it might happen :D On the same day, I expect the hardcore Blender users will be furious...
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby Khai » Mon Aug 31, 2009 7:08 am

d12dozr wrote:
Khai wrote:I'm just questioning the choice of export option here...


I think they are going after the gaming, art, and film markets which seem to be gaining share on the original architecture market:


then OBJ would be the format most common to all the apps. seriously, if you take a look, nearly all the apps in use by the big studios down can use OBJ. few can use Collada.
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby Aerilius » Mon Aug 31, 2009 7:25 am

I did some test with kmz files: I believe Collada must support components. Otherwise, the filesize would need to multiply after multiplying the Sketchup components.

Obj is quite an old format. But most apps do not dare to ignore it. There is already a good obj-exporter plugin and when I needed to reimport it again, I converted it in other apps into 3ds (most apps have both). It would be good if obj was in SU by standard.
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby kwistenbiebel » Mon Aug 31, 2009 11:16 am

I think that the reason DWG will be ripped out is Autodesk.
Google tries to keep things open source-ish. Just like android, which is based on open source Linux code.
It is becoming a tradition.

I guess, choosing Collada over DWG adds to that strategy...
And off course, Google Earth is using it already so it makes the choice easier.
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby tbd » Mon Aug 31, 2009 11:54 am

wmanning wrote:COLLADA is not a good format for exchanging a CAD file. It doesn't recognize layers, so everything will be on layer 0.


wrong. COLLADA has the <layer> element and you can even have an object on layer "glow" and on layer "light" at the same time

wmanning wrote:It doesn't recognize groups, blocks, or components (I'm pretty sure).


wrong again. they are called instances and you can do even external references (have them stored only in one place)

wmanning wrote:And everything becomes triangulated, so a lot of architectural files will need clean-up.


you can have polygons as well (and much more). it all depends on how the COLLADA specification is implemented. and if Google will have COLLADA as main format I bet it will be properly implemented.
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby notareal » Mon Aug 31, 2009 12:07 pm

dedmin wrote:Collada support is very positive - a lot of companies are improving their support - Blender, SolidWorks, Modo etc.
The real problem is Autodesk's monopoly and arrogance! If dwg is a standard - make it open standard! About Blender - this hype about the difficult interface is nonsense! Actualy it is very easy if YOU READ ABUT IT! There is coming a new version with a lot of improvement in the UI side ! Read this http://www.blender3darchitect.com/


I would not dare to say that Blender interface is easy, all the time it feels that different types of items are just cluttered together, reading and knowing key combos wont help. For me it's simply illogical and inconsistent; try to locate all mesh editing tools..., BUT 2.5 seems to be a major change and most likely I'll then drop SU and jump to Blender wagon, but time shows how it goes. SU6 pro is still fine tool for me and if there had not been this community and generous ruby developers... I would be using some other tool.

Collada support sounds good and I have a feeling that many free users will welcome that. It feels a bit like strategic move to only offer dwg import in pro, but I would not complain as long as old SU stays in working condition.
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby dedmin » Mon Aug 31, 2009 12:11 pm

I know that every change is hard, but we have to try to cut off Autodesk's monopoly! Ask your clients to send you collada files - after all it is your interest! If you want to escape from SketchUP, you will have a bunch of collada files to open easily in any other compatible application! I have jpg's since 1999 and can open them in any viewer - that's freedom!
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby thomthom » Mon Aug 31, 2009 1:08 pm

dedmin wrote:I know that every change is hard, but we have to try to cut off Autodesk's monopoly! Ask your clients to send you collada files - after all it is your interest! If you want to escape from SketchUP, you will have a bunch of collada files to open easily in any other compatible application! I have jpg's since 1999 and can open them in any viewer - that's freedom!

Seeing how most people in my office doesn't know what an PNG file is - and keep asking me if everyone can view it - I doubt Collada would make it into the architectural office I work in. Never has that format been mentioned. People stick to what they know works. Asking clients for collada file will just annoy them.
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby dedmin » Mon Aug 31, 2009 1:40 pm

Wrong - there were times before SketchUp, before Autodesk and even before Google. Where are the pencil and the papers - changes happen all the times but usually too slow to see them :enlight:

It is always the same - the first reaction is annoyance, doubt and looking for arguments why the change won't happen :roll:
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby thomthom » Mon Aug 31, 2009 1:56 pm

Can't really see how the digital revolution can be compared to using different file format. Using computers instead of pencils became a requirement - not and option. DWG vs Collada is a matter of choosing flavour.
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Re: Bad News for Architects in the next ver. of Google Sketchup

Postby dedmin » Mon Aug 31, 2009 2:29 pm

thomthom wrote:Can't really see how the digital revolution can be compared to using different file format. Using computers instead of pencils became a requirement - not and option. DWG vs Collada is a matter of choosing flavour.


Not revolution but change, not file format but open file format and yes - more choices! You still have choice to use Pro or any other program. Where is the free version of AutoCAD or 3DS Max?
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