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Google and SketchUp

By Global Assocaites SketchUp Team

Google SketchUp is a simple and powerful tool for drawing and designing 3D models and is used for creating drawings for Architecture, Interior Design, Landscape, Furniture Design, Film Making, Game Development. Google Sketch Up has been available since April 1996. It was originally developed by @ Last Software and released in August 2000. Google acquired @ Last Software in 2006.

Implications:

The Tools - Google SketchUp has the potential to radically alter the design playing field. The software is easy to use does not require much technical knowledge and is good for customers who want to quickly visualize what a building will look like before construction. While there will be many people who just download and use the tool for fun, it puts commercial quality design tools in the hands of anyone with a computer and access to the web.

Google SketchUp is the only software package that actually creates multipart features. SketchUp is a very productive and affordable tool for architectural and landscape architectural.

With this software it is possible to use a photo to draw a 3D building that can be viewed from all sides. Also it is easy to make it zoom in the front door and go from room to room.

It is important to note that when we are using SketchUp to create 3D content for use in ArcGIS, the option to also save to the Google Earth format is only a different “save as” menu pick away. In reality, Google Earth needs the GIS data from ArcGIS to help build content for Google Earth.

As long as the software remains in the marketplace and continues to grow in functionality, everyone wins. An expanded audience of architects and developers realizing that they can use the 3D GIS and/or Google Earth to display their work for public review and comment.

The negative sides of the acquisition lies in the fact that the people at @Last Software are now restricted in what they can say about the future of their software. This is due to the fact that Google is a publicly traded corporation and is subject to federal regulations.

The Community:

Google is great at creating communities and there is already a community developing around SketchUp. That community will only grow and it provides companies that currently design in North America and Europe an opportunity to access design talent from anywhere in the world and substantially increase the rate of new product innovation while lowering their costs.


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