27 Replies Latest reply on Mar 18, 2019 4:31 PM by Tim Smith

    When can I start modeling in VR?

    Tim Smith

      We've been seeing the possibilities for using VR on the back end of the product development process. But when can I start using VR at the beginning, ie modeling?

        • Re: When can I start modeling in VR?
          Christian Chu

          I guess you mean virtual reality. is it embed a real image of the object into sketch is a start? or get a step file of the object and insert into assembly is another one

          • Re: When can I start modeling in VR?
            Tim Smith

            Go check out Oculus Medium. It's a sculpting app with a VR specific GUI to optimize sculpting in VR.

            • Re: When can I start modeling in VR?
              Brian Kenyon

              Have you taken a look at SOLIDWORKS Visualize | SOLIDWORKS yet? Im not sure it it will help but its in that direction.

              • Re: When can I start modeling in VR?
                Vittorio Bava

                At Mindesk we're working on a SolidWorks plugin that will allow just that*; we'll release an early version probably already next month and then we'll keep on adding features. Have a look at the Rhino plugin videos to get an idea of what it will be. So, please have just a little more patience

                 

                *We keep on hearing about how people want to model in VR, in general, but if you want something in particular please do get in touch, hearing directly from users really helps us to prioritize new features.

                • Re: When can I start modeling in VR?
                  Alin Vargatu

                  Tim Smith wrote:

                   

                  We've been seeing the possibilities for using VR on the back end of the product development process. But when can I start using VR at the beginning, ie modeling?

                  After extensively using a professional holodeck (a mid-range one, not terribly expensive, lacking the mind-link that can be found in the more expensive ones), I would never go back to such primitive devices as an Oculus.

                   

                  A few things that I would improve on the holodeck functionality (too bad I did not submit this as ideas in the TTL 2019):

                   

                  • limit the settings for the gravity to no more than 2Gs. The one I used had no limits on gravity - go too high and the results are no pretty!
                  • allow environment mirroring
                  • have the custom property flags displayed in a color that changes dynamically, depending on the POV and the background. As you can imagine, if the color is white and the back wall is white too, you cannot read anything.
                  • allow for automatic adjustments of the focus, based on the user dioptries. Would be nice not to have to use glasses in the holodeck.
                  • allow for touch feedback on any part of the body, not only on the soles and hands.
                  • ensure that section views do not harm humans or other mamals present in the holodeck, rats excluded.
                  • reduce fan noise
                  • add support for Alexa
                  • Re: When can I start modeling in VR?
                    Steven Mills

                    I can just imagine all the user interface conversions that will be needed for that. Take a look at how much the UI had to be changed for games moving from a PC to a game console. And even the best VR has a couple of real life problems right now - How to Play VR games without barfing

                      • Re: When can I start modeling in VR?
                        Frederick Law

                        I hope I don't need to run and jump designing a fixture in VR.

                         

                         

                        Damn, where does the zombie came from?

                        Need to draw an axe fast!

                        • Re: When can I start modeling in VR?
                          Vittorio Bava

                          You're absolutely right. If there's one thing I feel confident to brag about, it's the fact that the upcoming Mindesk plug-in does not cause motion sickness: we spent years of UI studies and experimentation just to optimize this aspect, since we envisioned that professionals would (understandably) have very little patience for something that may make them hate their job. Every movement in VR is calibrated to your body movement, so there's never a dissonance between what you see and what you experience in your ear bones. For example, to this purpose we deactivated the possibility to go upside down, which users often do on a 2D screen: it's an auto-imposed limitation that actually liberates the user, it makes you "feel" you're there - and in "God mode" since it's VR.

                        • Re: When can I start modeling in VR?
                          Dan Golthing

                          Do you mean this:

                           

                          The Future of Design - YouTube

                           

                          Maybe add a VR headset?

                           

                          SolidWorks only has several billion dollars of revenue annually to decide where to allocate the funds, and yet no advancements in interface since 1995 (oh, forgive me, they did come out with colorless icons).  Elon whipped this up with some of the change he found in his couch.

                           

                          Even though the technology all seems to be there, you must be asking why it isn't being implemented.  We already have gaming consoles with gesture control.  We already have voice command API's available by many companies.  We already have VR headsets. 

                           

                          So you're probably thinking, what is the issue, why not implement these technologies??

                           

                          It's a good question, many have already asked.  Why are we still using a keyboard and mouse, decades old tech?

                           

                          Every time someone brings up voice commands many rubes here on the forum chime in that they don't want it because they work in a noisy environment.  SolidWorks users are their own worst enemies.  So many lack any sort of vision.  They don't even know the current state-of-the-art on many technologies such as voice recognition where the computers are getting better at recognizing a certain voice amongst many.  They can't put two and two together and ask why these new technologies can't be applied to CAD.

                           

                          Can someone please explain to these people that they won't be forced to use voice commands or VR if SolidWorks were to implement it.  Heck, they didn't have to use 3D CAD either, they could have stuck with AutoCAD or paper drawings for that matter.  Screw progress, right?

                           

                          Kind of sad if you ask me.

                            • Re: When can I start modeling in VR?
                              Steven Mills

                              Ever read the story Superority by A. C. Clarke? That is why we stick with old technologies until most of the bugs are worked out of newer tech. Realibality. Voice recognition has enough problems that I don't want it as the primary means of controlling anything. VR has an earned reputation of not being able to be used for long until you train yourself to not have motion sickness. So yeah, we stick with what is reliable, and don't switch to something until it too is reliable and not just because someone promises us that it is better.

                               

                              This is coming from a guy who wonders why we still use doorknobs instead of handles.

                               

                              EDIT: I should re-phrase and say, "Until we see for our selves that something is reliable, and not just because a salesperson swears to God that it better than what we currently have."

                              And I am glad that we are advancing as a society, that we do keep trying to find new and probably better ways to do things.

                                • Re: When can I start modeling in VR?
                                  Frederick Law

                                  Steven Mills wrote:

                                   

                                  This is coming from a guy who wonders why we still use doorknobs instead of handles.

                                  Because bag and cloth get caught on handle

                                  You can also jam the handle so it can't be open.

                                   

                                  I get motion sickness with video games below 30fps.

                                  3D movie was a problem.

                                    • Re: When can I start modeling in VR?
                                      Vittorio Bava

                                      thanks for bringing this up too, it was another sensitive area of effort: eventually we managed to have 90fps for pretty heavy objects (up to a couple of Gb, a few million polygons) even with a "basic" GPU (minimum VR-ready graphic card, Nvidia 1060).


                                      I don't want to sound spammy, but since you seem to be familiar with the topic too, would you like to be involved in the testing as well? If so, please write me (mail address is on my profile), thanks!

                                    • Re: When can I start modeling in VR?
                                      Dan Golthing

                                      Steven Mills wrote:

                                       

                                      Voice recognition has enough problems that I don't want it as the primary means of controlling anything.

                                      Isn't it funny whenever someone brings up voice recognition all cognition goes out the window...

                                       

                                      "I work in a noisy office"

                                       

                                      "I don't want it as the primary means of controlling anything"

                                       

                                      And so on.

                                       

                                      No one ever said that if such a widely used and currently accepted technology is finally brought to SolidWorks that we'd all be forced to use it...that no longer would there be any icons or a mouse!  Why is everybody so scared of the inevitable?

                                       

                                      Wouldn't you like the option?

                                       

                                      I just saw a video of a guy with cerebral palsy who needs every possible alternative to the conventional CAD interface.

                                  • Re: When can I start modeling in VR?
                                    Tim Smith

                                    1_JzEpa6aK92q5KTyJGYDn_g.jpg

                                    But then again we were using Model Based Definition before Solidworks came out with the Dimxpert module. What's the extreme sport saying "if you aren't living on the edge, you're taking up too much space"

                                    I look at the efficiencies I picked up by going to the space pilot. That and a lower RSI risk on my right hand. I feel we owe it to ourselves as people who are supposed to think outside the box. To think outside the box.

                                      • Re: When can I start modeling in VR?
                                        Dan Golthing

                                        Tim Smith wrote:

                                         

                                        1_JzEpa6aK92q5KTyJGYDn_g.jpg

                                        I feel we owe it to ourselves as people who are supposed to think outside the box. To think outside the box.

                                        I think your thinking of Pro-E users, not SolidWorks users.  Around here it seems new ideas are typically met with trepidation.

                                          • Re: When can I start modeling in VR?
                                            Paul Salvador

                                            "Around here it seems new ideas are typically met with trepidation."

                                             

                                            Really?.. I've never seen it here,... well ok,. maybe like a lot! 

                                             

                                            Personally, if the DS fools would leave or let something with avoir des couilles take the reins.. SW may actually have more users who think outside a 4 sided object.

                                            • Re: When can I start modeling in VR?
                                              Joseph Dunfee

                                              The issue of creating a working user interface to do CAD modeling has been played around with in several university projects over the decades.  But, none of them has really resulted in a useful program.   That is not necessarily proof that it can't be done. But, I think it does, at least, show that it is not an easy thing to do.

                                               

                                              There are some 3rd party developers who have created 3D interfaces for CAD work, for perhaps (very roughly) two decades. But, those have not taken off.  It may have been because of their high cost, but it does show that the technology does not generate enough benefit to justify the cost.

                                               

                                              Now, there are multiple, and fairly low cost ways to do VR. Though, the problems are not 100% solved.  Specifically, the differences between eye accommodation and binocular aim when looking at objects in VR, can make problems for the use.  That problem is not solved yet.  So, there may never be a way to use a VR CAD station for an entire day, until that barrier is removed.  But, current VR hardware systems are certainly viable for short-term use.

                                               

                                              We have the capitalist system working to give us new and useful technology, or to suppress technology that really isn't that good. It has yet to be seen which side VR CAD systems really fall into.

                                                • Re: When can I start modeling in VR?
                                                  Tim Smith

                                                  I may albeit humble opinion. The issue is, it's only been in the last 18 to 24 months that the hardware costs have

                                                  come down to a point where mainstream enterprise would find is appealing to adopt, if, they could see an increase in throughput for the modeling portion of product development. The work done in decades past, on hardware of decades past doesn't give us a fair look at what current hardware with a fully fleshed out interface could do to reducing modeling times. I look back at how hard it was to convince me company to adopt the 3d connexion line of products. I literally had to buy my own and demonstrate that if was faster. Now we don't buy a workstation without buying one.

                                            • Re: When can I start modeling in VR?
                                              Vittorio Bava

                                              I had forgotten about this thread, but thanks to the last comment notification, I have the opportunity to give you some great news: last week we publicly launched an early version of Mindesk's plugin for SolidWorks; if you have a VR headset you can get the free trial here.

                                              For the moment it's just the viewer, but the special thing is the live link: anything done on the desktop is reflected in real time in VR; soon we may start adding features that allow also the opposite (VR input, like the Rhino plugin). This differs greatly from all other viewers, where you have to export the model first and then it's unmodifiable.

                                               

                                              There are some videos in the first link, I would immensely appreciate if you guys could give us some feedback on what you think. We're still in an early phase, you can express a wish and we can try to make it come true!

                                              • Re: When can I start modeling in VR?
                                                Tim Smith

                                                I saw this interface a few months ago. While I know it's not apples to apples as far a parametric modeling vs digital sculpting. There must be some take away that would be applicable.

                                                occuls rift 3d modeling vclay orc - Bing video