For several years now, Autodesk has been expanding its portfolio of cloud services in various industries with products such as BIM 360, Fusion 360 etc. These are the next-generation solutions for 3D CAD and corresponding industries. However, today came the surprise announcement that Autodesk has released its FIRST wearable hardware – AVR Glass: Autodesk Virtual Reality Glass! It allows you to design in virtual reality! AVR is similar to Google Glass, but focuses on CAD industry. And it's marketed in different styles at a bargain price of only $268 (Google Glass explorer 2.0 is $335).
AVR is easy to use. Just take your AVR glass into a quiet room and be seated. Put on the AVR glass, and switch on the power. When the countdown on the screen shows the internet is connected, raise one hand ahead of the Kinect Sensor and make a fist. The AVR glass will log in to Autodesk 360. Your design session has started. You can choose the industry you want to enter by simply clicking the virtual menu on your left. For example, if architecture, the glass will bring you to a virtual environment as if you are standing on a real building construction site. You can even choose a real site which links the modeling environment with Google Earth and Google Maps.
You can “see” the construction elements (steel beam, concrete beam, brick etc) available nearby. Don’t try to move towards them - just point to the element you need with your finger, wave your hand with a gesture “grab”, and the element will come to your side. Grab the elements and put them in the place you want. The workflow is just like you do on your monitor with Revit - but now you’re doing it in a virtual 3D world. If your eyes focus on one element for more than 3 seconds, its properties information will appear. You can wave your hand ahead of the Kinect Sensor to wipe it out. In the first version, grabbing more than two elements at one time will cause some lag. Our AVR boffins are working on the issue, but since you only have two hands, a maximum of two elements shouldn’t be too limiting. You have also the choice to resize the dimensions of the elements or orbit until it meets the location you want. Simply grab the element, rotate and resize.
Of course, an action recorder is provided. It can repeat what you did, in order to save time on repetitive construction tasks. The action recorder will also form the basis of a future collaboration with Cyberdyne Systems – a well known manufacturer of autonomous robotic systems. Actions recorded through AVR can be downloaded to a robot at the construction site, who will actually construct the building using the actions you have recorded.
AVR glass also supports collaboration which will make it invaluable to large enterprises where multiple designers collaborate together from feedback from our Beta testers indicates that collaboration is the most popular feature of AVR glass – particularly when positioning very heavy elements.
However, remember when using AVR glass for extended periods that virtual life doesn’t just consumes virtual energy, but real ’neural energy’. Two hours is the recommended maximum time spent in a single design session.
Where can you buy the glass! It is available in Autodesk Exchange Store (Yes - the Store now sells hardware!). To mark its launch, there is a huge discount (50%) today only (April 1st).
P.s. Thank Stephen for his nice editing, like robot, boffin (reminds me of cute puffins!), etc. I am complete ready to buy one tomorrow.