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google buys @last software (sketchup)

Mar 14 '06 14 Last Comment
manamana
Mar 14, 06 10:48 pm
 

A Center for Ants?
Mar 14, 06 10:51 pm

oh man... this could be really crazy w/ google earth...

as long as they just don't call it google sketch

WonderK
Mar 14, 06 10:57 pm

It makes sense since you can do the 3D thing in Google Earth, which is gorgeous, BTW. Anyone else forsee a completely 3D model of the surface of the earth in Google's future? Can you imagine that? Wicked cool.....

SuperBeatledud
Mar 15, 06 12:35 am

Google = good.
SketchUp= fantastic wonders I could never have envisioned.

Google + SketchUp = one paranoid SuperBeatledud...

As "they" say, why mess with a good thing?

waxwings
Mar 15, 06 1:56 am

according to the atlast software guys, this came out of working on the google earth plugin. plus, the 3d city models in google earth look sketchuppy.

maybe now, they'll settle on the scroll/zoom function -ie forward zooms out on google earth and zooms in in sketchup.

upside
Mar 15, 06 4:13 am

google mars is cool

SuperBeatledud
Mar 15, 06 1:20 pm

I'm frankly a little nervous/excited about google's new found prosperity. Ofcourse their search engine is top notch, and neither "Microsoft Live" nor Yahoo will be able to touch it for some time. Perhaps if Apple comes out with a MS Live type site, but I would expect a partnership with the two before that happens. My biggest concern is the fact that Google is prospering so well with so many innovative and fantasticaly designed ideas. Now this would ofcourse appear to be a great thing, which it is, but again, what if Google loses touch with it's innovative side, and becomes your standard corporate jugernaut? They would probably take SketchUp down with it.

SketchUp isn't the first program they've bought out/aquired. They also bought rights to a company's software called Keyhole (which I can't figure out if they own the company or just own their software engine). The software itself is the exact same as when I was using it 5 years ago, but ofcourse now it's free instead of costing several hundred dollars a year. Oh, and they changed the name of the software to GoogleEarth.

But the question ultimately remains, what will SketchUp's focus be? The program has always been targeted towards designers and specifically architects. But with Google's aquisition, will they try to expand the program to a larger audience, thereby losing the focus and efficiency of the program? Now SketchUp may be geared toward the non-professional or joe-shmo user. Maybe we'll even get different versions much like Autodesk, and maybe we'll get into interface issues and overly complex options like Autodesk.

In conclusion, the possibilities of the joining of these two could be endless, but at the same time, the disasters of such are just as expansive.

5
Mar 15, 06 4:23 pm

Google will probably just make the program free but place little advertisements in all of your models that analyze your design style and taylor what they sell you to your architectural profile. Also, you will never read the fine print on your new free copy of sketchup, but you will later find out that anything designed, modeled or rendered in Google SketchUp is the property of google, if google chooses to use it, which they wont. Instead, what they will do is analyze the architecture that people create in sketchup and collect massive caches of data that will help predict the future of building, which will help google immensely when they aquire the physical world and create microenvironments taylored to each individual so they will buy only products that they like and only see things around them that please them.

Still, all I'm hoping is that google throws a little capital into that branch of their business so sketchup can goddamn well get some decent rendering ability, and maybe start modelling solids. I mean, free programs like wings 3d can do lighting, why can't an immensely successful firm like atlast do it for sketchup?

A
Mar 15, 06 5:19 pm

After all the recent revelations that Google doesn't really make that much money after all, they are probably in a hurried rush to make aquisitions. Since the stock price has been tanking they need to use what capital they've got to get some companies that sell tangible goods and create liquidity for themselves. Dot.com bubble revisited.

All the insiders at Google have been dumping their shares as fast as the SEC will allow them to. To me that doesn't sound like this great company that's everyone raves about. But I'm sure if At Last were bought by AutoDesk everyone would be pissed and talk about how they'll destroy the software. Did not WorldCom destroy MCI? What about AOL & Time Warner. I for one am not cheering.

architecturegeek
Mar 15, 06 5:27 pm

Superbeatledud- Google owns keyhole not just the software. You'll notice keyhole is still selling their software, and that google earth is essentially a 'lite' version of keyhole/google earth pro.

Don't expect to see sketchup disappear or be released for free, at least not in it's curent form. You may see a lite version availiable for free with limited capabilites, in order to allow users to populate google eart communities with 3D buildings.
They also might be eyeing sketchup for inclusion in a future google online Operating System........

ryanj
Jul 7, 06 11:40 pm

"as long as they just don't call it google sketch"

ha

vado retro
Jul 8, 06 12:05 am

all my skectchup drawings look like michael grave circa 1970's

ryanj
Jul 8, 06 12:20 am

graves circa 1990's

e909
Jul 10, 06 2:08 pm
FOG Lite
Jul 10, 06 3:27 pm

Bit of google earth trivia-
if you just zoom without any panning or tilting, you see one of the programmers old apartments in Lawrence, KS.

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