Last enhances SketchUp
Win With SketchUp 2.0 from @Last Software, AEC professionals can create, view, modify, and communicate their ideas via 3D presentations, email, and the Web. This latest version offers features that provide better integration throughout the design process. It also offers such design exploration features as In-Place Component Editing, which enables architects to visualize changes in one building element dynamically throughout an entire project, and updated material exploration tools, which provide immediate feedback in color and texture assignment. Additional features include auto-folding geometry, which enables users to explore complex forms, as well as an interactive scale tool, linear and radial array capabilities, mirroring, and object grouping. The Windows version sells for $475. A Mac OS X release is planned for later this summer.
@Last Software; www.sketchup.com
Win With RealViz's ReTimer 2.5, users can smoothly speed up or slow down any video, film, or image sequence. The software works by automatically generating new frames in between existing frames. Users can reportedly change the pacing of footage by up to 1000 percent, and they can manually or automatically carry out individual pixel tracking correction. New features in 2.5 include a field-specific processing facility for working with interlaced video footage, and a matte processing capability that enables users to completely separate foreground and background imagery during the computation process. ReTimer 2.5 sells for $3499.
3D mapping program
With Golden Software's Surfer 8 contouring and 3D mapping package, users can convert XYZ data into one of nine different color map types. Then, with the click of a button, the software creates fully rendered 3D surfaces that can be overlaid with aerial photos, satellite imagery, or other bitmaps to create photo-realistic 3D models. In addition to image overlay functionality, the software also features operations that enable users to merge, or mosaic, multiple grid files to create a single map, and it validates users' data to determine which of 12 included gridding methods will produce the best map. The software, which imports and exports data files in all popular formats, sells for $599.
Golden Software; www.goldensoftware.com
A faster Lightworks
Lightworks Touch is a superset of LightWorks' Classic Lightworks Turbo and Heavyworks systems, except it's been redesigned to be faster and more responsive to users' needs. At the heart of the system is the console, which the company describes as an ergonomically designed control surface that connects the editor directly to the material. Lightworks Touch also offers real-time effects, plug-in support for rendered effects, and complete networking capabilities. Price not available.
Interactive pen display
Win | MAC | SOLARIS | IRiX The Cintiq 18sx large-format, pressure-sensitive interactive pen display from Wacom Technology features a 24-bit, 18.1-inch diagonal LCD screen boasting an SXGA screen resolution of 1280 by 1024 pixels. It also features a pressure-sensitive grip pen that provides 512 levels of pressure; a 360-degree rotating stand; and a single-cable system. Reduced parallax technology allows the cordless pen to be closer to the LCD surface, thereby reducing parallax. Its analog and digital video interface make the Cintiq backward-compatible with the VGA installed base and forward-compatible with the emerging DVI video standard. The Cintiq 18sx sells for $3500. SGI and Sun drivers and adapters sell as a Unix kit for $149 extra.
Wacom Technology; www.wacom.com
A specification of 1.3 million pixels and frame rates of up to 1000 fps are two of the features highlighting Vicon's Mcam2 motion-capture camera. The camera, which works with the Vicon8 motion capture system, also includes a shuttered digital CMOS sensor developed for Vicon to deliver high sensitivity, resolution, and range, and it's available with visible red or infrared strobes and a choice of high-grade fixed focal-length and zoom lenses. Price not available.