semi OT: product review: Google SketchUp

This free program is worth every penny.
http://sketchup.google.com /
It seems to be working for me in my efforts to design a major remodel project. It is taking me considerable time to unlock the power and streamline my work. But it's pretty satisfying as work progresses. It makes it very easy to try different ideas. Save your work often though, or you'll find yourself wishing you could go back to some mid-point between two saved versions of your work. File management strategy might be handy, I'm beginning to think. The available tutorials are fairly helpful in the quest to learn to think as the program does.
Sharing files with other programs requires the pay version (Pro 6) for $495, though you can easily share with somebody who also has SketchUp. Whether I end up needing Pro6 remains to be seen. Printed output is easy and should fill my permitting needs. Right now, this tool is helping me get it done.
It's fun just for doodling too. Another cool tool. If you don't have CAD software, this is much better than what you have. If you do have CAD software, I'd be interested in comparisons.
-Dean squirming in my chair when it doesn't do what I expect. I can see how this work all day every day would wear on the synapses.
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I used TurboCAD for years before discovering SketchUp. I gave up TurboCAD altogether. SketchUp is fast, more fun and I think does a better job at presenting my ideas to others. I wrote a short review of it on my website http://www.srww.com/google-sketchup.htm and I also have written some tutorials for beginners that I placed on my blog www.srww.com/blog. I think this tool is catching on quickly and will make a real dent in traditional CAD tools.
Joe.... www.srww.com

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Was really thinking about spending 180 on something else for drawing. But your tutorials showed me SketchUp can do it.
Thanks. just need mo practice.
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Rick,
Glad to help. Stay tuned. Part 4 is almost complete.
Joe.... www.srww.com
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On Sat, 12 Apr 2008 16:13:13 -0400, Dean H. wrote:

The format used for the sketchup google earth export is a zipped file containing a Collada DAE 1.4 format file. This is supported by most quality 3D applications, including autocad, bentley, truespace, blender and many others.
Sharing files works reasonably well between apps that support Collada imports and exports. I usually quick sketch in sketchup(free) and then load into blender to use the freeform sculpting tools. I go back and forth between sketchup(free) and autocad if doing architectural work. Autocad for the easy inclusions of industry supplied blocks for manufactured components; windows, doors, trim, switches, fasteners, etc. (cadblocks and others)
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