SketchUp 6 brings 3D design to the masses

Another wonderful program has been given to us from the minds at Google: SketchUp 6 and SketchUp 6 Pro. This new software gives regular people the ability to create intricate 3D designs for free.

Sketchup 6 is a free, downloadable program that lets the user make 3D designs. The program is easy to use and a fun way to spend some time, whether you are designing your new house or attempting to build the world’s tallest building.

SketchUp offers step-by-step instructions and detailed video tutorials to quickly teach the user all the nuances of the program. Once a 3D model is made, it can be stored in the 3D warehouse, turned into an animated movie, or even imported into Google Earth.

Once the model is finished, the creator can add color, texture, and landscaping to the model; the lines can even be changed to look as if they were drawn in pencil.

For the more serous designer, models and their exact dimensions can be imported into AutoCAD and 3ds MAX, which are advanced 3D design programs. They can also invest in SketchUp 6 Pro; you can download a free eight-hour trial, or purchase the program for a mere $495.

However, SketchUp Pro 6 is not for the casual designer, it is tailored more to the professional; it was made to be more compatible with other 3D design programs and can export a wider variety of file types. The Pro version also includes LayOut, a program that allows the user to create entire presentations from the SketchUp model.

Google doesn’t lie; SketchUp 6 certainly is easy to use and a fun way to waste some time for the casual 3D designer. The tools are mostly simple and whenever they get complicated, a tutorial is only a click away. Once again, bravo Google.

Joe Kunitz staff writer