LEDAS opens up parametric modeling for Google SketchUp users

LEDAS Ltd., a leading provider of computational software components for computer-aided design (CAD) systems, releases the first free application for variational direct modeling in Google SketchUp. Driving Dimensions plug-in gives Google SketchUp users a unique combination of wide capabilities with an easy-to-use tool for parametric editing of 3D models.

«Google SketchUp is a popular free program for 3D modeling, used by both professionals and amateurs», says Dmitry Ushakov, Director, Product Management & Marketing, LEDAS. «Until now, however, its users could not parametrically modify constructed models. Adjusting dimensions for the required values by direct editing of a model is a very labor-intensive process, which can take hours to complete. With our module, driving dimensions of a geometric element with desired values are set by a click of a mouse. Model geometry will be changed automatically to simultaneously satisfy all given driving dimensions».

The first version of Driving Dimensions sets two kinds of driving dimensions: the length of an edge and the radius of a circle (an arc). With these tools SketchUp users can:

  • Increase efficiency of 3D modeling: simply define the required driving dimensions of the model elements at the time of construction, and the model will be redesigned automatically to satisfy the new requirements
  • Control dimensions at the time of editing: to satisfy all previously defined driving dimensions following any number of geometry editing operations, it suffice to call the recalculate command
  • Create families of parametric models: it is enough to open the file of a model with driving dimensions and input a new value for a single or several dimensions, and the model will be automatically recalculated in accord with the changes
  • Easily modify alien models: created by other users or imported to SketchUp from other programs, by simply specifying driving dimensions for their elements

In the subsequent versions, LEDAS plans to expand the current set of driving dimensions, adding the tools for setting driving distances and angles, geometric constraints (such as parallelism and perpendicularity), dynamic satisfactions of constraints when moving model elements and other capabilities brought to the users by the new technology of variational direct modeling. LEDAS intends to develop similar applications for other popular 3D modeling programs.

Driving Dimensions is a plug-in operating directly in the Google SketchUp environment. Its release is part of the LEDAS strategy, announced two weeks ago, for launching the new technology of variational direct modeling. This is a technology for smart parametric modification – preserving the logic, directly or indirectly put in the original model. To this purpose, it uses geometric and dimensional constraints, which are automatically generated in accord with the topology or geometry of a boundary model, features or are manually set by a user. The constraints and dimensions are satisfied preserving the design intent. More information about the new technology can be found in the White Paper “Variational Direct Modeling: How To Keep Design Intent In History-Free CAD” freely available at ledas.com/pdf/VariationalDirectModeling.pdf.

Driving Dimensions is based on the LGS 3D variational geometric solver, which solves the systems with thousands simultaneous constraints in the real-time mode. The solver, developed by LEDAS, is used in several commercial CAD systems and is available for licensing for developers. The solver can be successfully integrated with all geometric kernels, available on the market, and serves as a basis for implementing the new technology of variational direct modeling. For information about the LGS 3D variational geometric solver please go to http://www.ledas.com/products/lgs3d/.

Driving Dimensions is compatible with Google SketchUp 6 and Google SketchUp Pro 6 running on Windows 2000/XP/Vista. The application can be downloaded freely from www.DrivingDimensions.com. On the site you can also find detailed information, view training video clips, learn about the latest versions and use the site forum for communicating with other users and developers.


LEDAS Ltd. is an independent software development company founded in 1999; it is based in Novosibirsk Scientific Centre (Akademgorodok), Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Science. A leader in constraint-based technologies, LEDAS is a well-known provider of computational software components for PLM (Product Lifecycle Management) solutions: geometric constraint solvers for CAD/CAM/CAE, optimization engines for Project Management, Work Scheduling and Meeting Planning as well as interval technologies for Knowledge-Based Engineering and Collaborative Design. The company also provides services for PLM market: software development, consulting, reselling as well as education and training.
More information about LEDAS is available at www.ledas.com.


LEDAS Sales and Marketing Department
Phone: +7 383 3356 504
fax: +7 383 3356 256
email: info@ledas.com

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