3DVIA goes 3D

3DVIA Studio Stereoscopic immersionLast week, Dassault Systemes announced that the free download of the new 3DVIA Studio development environment now includes drag and drop stereoscopic 3D.  They state that this allows any user of the 3DVIA Studio to quickly create a “3D experience”, not only for 3D monitors and TVs, but also for non-stereoscopic screens using the traditional red-blue glasses.

They claim the new functionality in their free 3DVIA Studio application will help developers and “average customers”.  3DVIA Studio comes with tutorials that can get users started with this functionality within minutes.

I’ve personally not dabbled with the stereoscopic toys in 3DVIA Studio yet.  I did try out 3DVIA Studio recently, and I’m looking forward to playing around with it more.  For now, here’s a quick introductory video about the new fucntionality.

New Product: 3DVIA Mobile HD

Dassault Systemes announced the release of 3DVIA Mobile HD, which they claim is “a first-of-its-kind interactive 3D model viewer for the iPad.”  Connectivity (cloud?) continues to be a theme from Dassault Systemes.  3DVIA Mobile HD gives users access to view and interact with thousands of 3D models which are hosted on the 3DVIA.com content warehouse.  Most 3D modelling software applications are able to connect to 3DVIA.com to share work on the iPad platform, including content in over 30 3D formats.

3DVIA Mobile HD 13DVIA Mobile HD 7

Also, Dassault Systemes claims that “3DVIA Mobile HD retains the speed, fluid movement and easy-to-navigate interface of the [original 3DVIA Mobile] iPhone app [while taking] advantage of the increased screen size and resolution of the iPad, making this a powerful 3D content demonstration tool.”

3DVIA Mobile HD will feature the following:

  • Interactive 3D viewer: pan, zoom and inspect models with intuitive iPad finger movements
  • Integrated 3DVIA 3D model search: search, download and view over 20,000 3D models published to 3DVIA.com
  • Compatible with popular 3D formats: .dae (COLLADA), .3ds, .obj, .iges, .step, .kmz, .3DXML and many more
  • Save and export 2D renders (images) to Facebook and e-mail
  • Private publishing on 3D models:  restrict access to sensitive product information by publishing to your private account
  • Interact with the 3DVIA.com community: comment on and rate 3D models from the iPad

3DVIA Modile HD for the iPad is available for the temporary price of $1.99 in the App Store; full price will be $4.99.

Connecting to other in 3DVIA Mobile HDSending model to Facebook from 3DVIA Mobile HD

As of right now, there is no word yet on if/when a similar application will be available for Android.  I would be excited about an Android offering since it wouldn’t be limited to just one device and Android is the best selling smartphone OS now.

3DVia can do it, so why not SolidWorks?

3DVia Composer3DVia Composer demonstrations have been all the rage at official SolidWorks and VAR events over the past year or so.  I’m getting quite familiar with 3DVia Composer just from the demos (I’ve never used it).  The more I see it, the more I realize just how much SolidWorks lacks in how it handles assemblies.

The past is the past

At one time, there was a function in SolidWorks that would allow the user to auto-explode their assembly.  The problem with this function is that it never worked well enough to be of much use.  As a result, the auto-explode function is not longer included in SolidWorks.

3DVia does it, so let’s improve SolidWorks

In demo after demo of 3DVia Composer, I see a milieu were assemblies are exploded and rearranged with superb ease.  This same ease should be available in SolidWorks assemblies!

Examples of 3DVia functions that should be added to SolidWorks assembly mode.

  • Ability to explode groups of parts within an assembly with one motion
  • Spherical explode
  • Onion skin mode

Magnet Lines

One new function in 3DVia Composer that should be added to SolidWorks drawing mode is the Magnet Line.   This allows the user to place one line (Magnet Line) on the drawing, then automatically attach to it a whole series of balloons so that they all are centered on that line.  The Magnet Line can then be moved around at any angle.  Regardless to the angle, all of the balloons remained aligned to each other by their common connection to the Magnet Line.

3DVia Composer Magnet Line

In fact, maybe Magnet Line shouldn’t be limited to just aligning balloons.  Maybe it can be used to align any type of annotations.  Maybe the Magnet Line can be made to affect annotations by their start, end or centers.  If sophisticated enough, maybe the Magnet Line can completely replace the outdated MS-Office style alignment tools now available in SolidWorks drawing mode.

3DVia on iPhone!

Now any 3D model can be viewed and inserted into a photo with the new 3DVia iPhone app. Check out the video:

The SolidWorks Blog states:

…you can use 3DVIA Mobile to get your SolidWorks models on your iPhone.

This is big news, as it directly impacts when and where 3D models can be shown.  Check out the instructions for using the 3DVia iPhone app to view SolidWorks models: Get your SolidWorks models on your iPhone with 3Dvia.  One limitation is that 3DVia save functionality requires SolidWorks 2009 SP2 or later.  This is a great idea that is past due!  Now, only if they’d develop something for Palm and Crackberry.