Say It in 3D!

By Richard

Hi, this is Richard. Before I talk about Passion for Innovation, my usual playground, I’d like to share some thoughts about 3D as a universal language.

First, let me tell you I’m really fond of languages. I think language reveals many things about the unique genius of a given people. The origin and evolution of a language is tightly linked to its speakers’ history, and the colloquial expressions reflect the way they see the world. That’s why I try to learn some basic words and useful sentences whenever I travel in a country I’ve never been before. It’s a matter of respect and helps me to be open to other cultures.

So, what’s the link with 3D? At Dassault Systèmes we believe that 3D is a language in its own right, a universal language. At this point I imagine some of you may be raising your eyebrows in sort of a “what the heck are they talking about?” kind of way. Let me explain.

Getting rid of the Babel curse is an old dream, which led to humans trying to build universal languages. The most well-known ones are Volapük and Esperanto. Although the latter one is still spoken today, all failed to fulfill the dream.

The reason is that you do not build a language from scratch. As mentioned before, a language is tightly linked to history and the genius of the people who forged it. It reflects the people’s deepest nature.

So, are we hopeless? Of course not. Here enters 3D.

Look at children. Before they can speak as adults do, kids naturally use drawings to communicate their vision of the world and their feelings. They also use gestures. Adults will use gestures as well to try and communicate with foreigners when they do not know a single word of their language.

As soon as we can’t rely on words, we resort to a direct, non-verbal, more or less accurate representation of the world. In other words, we draw– either on a flat surface (2D) or “in the air” (3D gestures).

If we could have a direct, exact representation of the world to present to other people, we would use it to communicate. That’s the point. Interactive 3D is the solution.

  • Because it’s 3D, it accurately represents our world (much better than a 2D drawing, even if you’re a reincarnated Da Vinci, perspective genius)
  • Because it’s interactive, you can let people play around with it, manipulate it at will.

Let’s take an example: Jean-Pierre Houdin’s theory about the Great Pyramid building. The downloadable full story is as crystal clear as humanly possible. However, building such a monument needs techniques which are delicate to put into words. Because we all have different backgrounds and experiences, some specific words will carry different meanings, some sentences will ring loud and clear for architects or scientists but not for people unfamiliar with those universes.

Now, let’s consider the 3D site. Watch Jean-Pierre’s avatar explain his theory “in person”. Experience the interactive, 3D navigation. Walk around the pyramid and navigate to places where you would like to see more details. You can do it, it’s all in 3D, and it’s all real-time and interactive. Best of all, if you have a chance to attend the immersive 3D show at La Geode (a giant media dome in Paris), you will experience Khufu’s building as if you were in Egypt at that time. Wearing special glasses, you will be among the workers hauling blocks of limestone and see the monument taking shape stone after stone. No lecture, no matter if it’s made by the world’s best orator, can match that.

3D eliminates all barriers. It’s not anymore about cultural or educational backgrounds. It’s all about pure experience, sensations and emotions. 3D talks directly to your senses.

That’s why we believe 3D is the universal language. We’ll show it through new, exciting projects soon. Stay tuned!

Keep 3D-ing!

Regards,

Rich

A Man in Black, Some Engineers, an Age-Old Mystery and 3D Software

By Kate

Passion. Obsession. An architect who wears only black clothing. 3D software engineers. Bob Brier. Immersive, interactive 3D experiences. Scientific simulation in the virtual world.

All these things have lead to two important discoveries:

• the Great Pyramid was constructed via an internal spiral ramp
• the King’s Chamber was assembled thanks to a sophisticated counterweight system lodged in the Grand Gallery

Zoom back to Passion.

I’d like to introduce you to Richard. He’s the guy on the left of the above photo.

Under the direction of our Interactive and Experiential Marketing Director Mehdi Tayoubi (guy on the right), Richard manages Dassault Systèmes’ Passion for Innovation program. It was through the Passion for Innovation program that Jean-Pierre Houdin (said architect in black) was able to fully develop his internal ramp and counterweight theories, a process which lead to the scientific exploration/validation of the next question: why are there cracks in the King’s Chamber?

This is just one example of the exciting projects bubbling up from Dassault Systèmes “Passion” program. Next week Richard’s on deck at 3D Perspectives to share other passionate projects with you. So I thought it was only proper that I introduce him to you first (we southerners place high importance on introductions).

If you’d like to dig deeper into The Great Pyramid’s construction secrets, you may be interested to read the English or French book (we don’t get a sales %):

The Secret of the Great Pyramid
Le Secret de la Grande Pyramide

Bonus must-sees include the gorgeous trailers to the FR and ENG films on YouTube, as well as the interactive, immersive virtual reality show being featured at La Geode in Paris . Enjoy!

Best,

Kate

Building the Design Foundation: Pillar 3

By Kate

The DS Design Studio is not just about Design Image and Design R&D Solutions. While we’ve talked about Design DNA within Dassault Systèmes, and the 3D software design solution for the design community, DS Design Studio’s activity is wide enough to require two additional foundational pillars.

Pillar 3: Design Experience:

For a product’s design to be fully understood and intelligently modified, it’s helpful to place it in its real context, even at the embryonic stage. By starting your product design in 3D and placing it into a 3D environment (including, virtually of course, the objects, architectures, ergonomics, and people that will be using the product), designers can get a sense early-on of what works and doesn’t.

As I mentioned in the DS Design Studio mission post, the philosophy of design experience is about “usage scenarios, or human needs and desires, and spirals to creative problem solving, the design of products, products within our environment, environments composing our experiences, and our experiences within our real lives.”

We see a lot of architecture designers placing their buildings in 3D contexts representing the neighborhoods, towns, or natural environments that will serve as home-sweet-home to the structures themselves. And inversely, they’re filling the interior of these structures with 3D representations of the objects, decoration and people that will fill them. The Weburbanist blog features some gorgeous and thought provoking examples of these in its 3D Farm Tower post.

DS Design Studio promotes the usage of 3D environments, objects and scenarios as a powerful Design Experience context for design reviews. The idea is to create a lifelike experience environment for the products under design.

From 3dvia.com, designers can download thousands of 3D objects to mix into their Design Experience scenarios. For example, today I looked under “furniture,” and there are 391models showing. Eventually these 3D objects will become “smart,” meaning they’ll include behaviors that will allow you to set them into action within your Design Experience scenario.

Tools that designers can use to create various environments for their beloved products-under-design include 3DVIA Virtools, a solution used by the gaming community but also more and more by industrials, and 3DVIA Shape (similar to Google Sketch-up). We can even imagine that more and more design reviews will take place in immersive VR caves where designers and clients can really participate in the virtual design scenarios and “test” the products. I’ve read that Jaguar is already doing this.

VR caves are amazing and I can’t wait to try the new one at DS Campus, but there’s an alternative to “entering the matrix” that provides some exciting design review possibilities. Now you can run, jump and roll around in 3D virtual worlds– literally. Sound spacey? You can catch a glimpse of how in the below video.

Here’s a closer look at the VR backpack you saw in the video:

Design experiencers simply put on the VR backpack (& viewer), step into the dark star/hamster cage, and then can begin travelling in a 3DVIA Virtools powered world. And guess who designed the VR backpack?

Best,

Kate



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Beyond PLM (Product Lifecycle Management), Dassault Systèmes, the 3D Experience Company, provides business and people with virtual universes to imagine sustainable innovations. 3DSWYM, 3D VIA, CATIA, DELMIA, ENOVIA, EXALEAD, NETVIBES, SIMULIA and SOLIDWORKS are registered trademarks of Dassault Systèmes or its subsidiaries in the US and/or other countries.