I’m over here in Perth doing a talk on Photogrammetry, which is the creation of 3D models using photography. I talked about this briefly back in April (see post here) and explained that this was completely new territory for me and my talk would be my first experiences with using ReCap, which is software currently owned by Autodesk and at the moment absolutely free to use. I’m not going to repeat the entire talk here (although a video recording may become available soon), but I did want to provide anyone who attended the seminar (and also anyone who reads my blog) with links to all the 3D models which you can play with online.
My overall impressions of the software
ReCap was incredibly easy to use. You upload a series of images of “something” to Autodesk 360 (Autodesk’s cloud service) and then ask it to create a model. That’s it. Super simple and free to use. The only problem however is that the results are varied. On the Box Brownie model it did an amazing job, and on a public sculpture it performed reasonably well, but on buildings and larger more complicated subjects it almost always failed. I called the results “Acid Modeling” because it looks like the software was taking some serious drugs when creating these models. So not a huge success, but fun to check out nonetheless.
My conclusion is that this software is inspiring, but has a long way to go. At a practical level it doesn’t make sense except for a couple scenarios, and there are lot of limitations, but i’d expect to see this technology becoming more widely used in the future. That’s it for now, and hopefully I can get the video from the BIM Day Out organizers and share it soon. For now, check out some of these online models and have a laugh
Box Brownie Camera
One of my favorite models from the tests I did.
Below is the the auditorium at Fed Square. I didn’t expect this model to work at all because of the double glass wall, but it did up creating way more than I would have thought possible.
Public sculptures are a perfect example of when this type of software is useful. Sculptures are difficult to model normally, and while this test didn’t provide a perfect result it was impressive.
Complex subject, with a lot of elements missing, but “interesting” in it’s own way
This attempt at modeling an entire bridge was a complete failure. There was just too many background objects interfering.
Small objects should model well, but in this case the hard edges of a parking meter became soft and rounded.
This was an attempt at modeling the facade of a building. The trouble was it was hard to get enough images from enough angles, and so the overall model is warped and lacking detail.